#Chapelhill is About Peace (and brotherhood movement)= CHAPS

Deah with, from left, his wife, Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, and her sister Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha

in a Facebook image.

Let’s all be chaps. I mean friends,not some division of the underpaying, overcharging Ralph Lauren Polo products. First, another prayer (we all pray to the same God ok?) for Yusor Mohammad Abu-Salha, 21; her husband, Mr. Barakat, 23; and her sister, Razan Mohammad Abu-Salha, 19.

The real enemies, if anyone at all, are those decimating the earth, getting a major profit from the hard work of underpaid labor in Asia, South America, and, um the USA, not to mention India and the Middle East in Specific.

People of all denominations and spiritual beliefs need to come together to save the earth, demand a living wage, replace the hogs at the top of the status quo, and use democracy (when available) to change the laws to create a system of social safety nets and RESOURCE PRESERVATIION everywhere from the Amazon rain forests to the entire oceans of the world.

Why not take the world’s massive underemployed and unemployed population and have them scoop plastic out of the ocean.

Why not ban plastic, not just plastic bags?  What’s wrong with glass?

The chance now, to not just honor the lives of the victims, but to use this to unite EVERYONE on the planet in a movement to save the planet and create *peace* for everyone not just the gated community people.

For international reader: There is no place better than Chapel Hill to start an NGO, to start an activist movement, to take back the planet for everyone.

Massive changes of laws must occur for this to work out. GATT 2, GATT 1,NAFTA and almost any other free trade agreement is set up to profit from cheap labor.

Labor unions which brought us the best pay and best working conditions and best lives possible, are now powerless as any strike can be met with “ok then we will just move the entire line of manufacturing abroad.”  No More strike ,and no more jobs at all in the USA.

Everyone except the shareho0lder class has been hurt by these pernicious WTO rules which supplant national sovereignty with “all-the-money-to-the-rich” schemes that resemble feudalism.

Fundamentalsim is scary in the Christian world and not exactly helpful anywhere else.  Fundamentalism means “my way or the hiway” or “my way or death to infidels” but that means perpetual war, and the USA has attacked 91 times since World War II, notably in Korea, Vietnam, Nicaragua, Serbia, Iraq (1,2,3) Afghanistan, Pakistan, (where next, Ukraine or Korea again?)

As an American I’m willing to give up my time to prove that as human beings we are as nice as anyone else, and that it is our GOVERNMENT that smells out loud.

This is true for everyone I’ve met either on the International Peace Walk in Russia in 1987 and again in the USA in 1989 or in my work in South Korea, or in the 31 other countries I’ve been in.

But this is about the movement, that should be larger than Occupy because the goals are even more radical in the face of this divided world.  DO NOT LET THE BIG WIGS AT THE TOP DIVIDE US ANY LONGER!

It’s our PLANET, God help us make CHAPS a reality.

Genocide, Slavery, Greed

We cry for the slavery that led to such wealth,

This is not just  the land of the free.

We witness genocide all over this earth.

What can we do to end greed?

We cry for the land, full of modified crops

We must work to save human life.

What will our grandchildren have to live through

Since our appetite causes such strife?

The oil wars that started a decade ago

Have moved toward the Caspian Sea.

We are the dissidents, loud, without fear,

Even if we are cut at the knees.

We cry for the news they keep off TV,

The grapevine could snap any day.

Disinformation is the age we live in,

So who’s going to show us the way?

The answer is simple, we grow as a team,

A new brotherhood in the light.

We must build the village, invite all your friends,

This is no time to give up the fight!

They have all the bombs, the juntas abound,

Monsanto is spraying the poor.

We must dig our hands into arable land

Or genetics will foul every spore.

Profit mongers have sucked the earth dry,

We must reclaim all that we can.

Industrial China, the last frontier,

Soon money will own every man.

The kids on the streets are locked-down together,

Push a bike, and you could get ten years!

All this is forced because we stopped caring,

Yet some offer blood, sweat and tears.

We couldn’t stop bosses from shipping our jobs,

The replacement is for-profit jails.

Our schools are rotting, so teach if you can,

Where it counts, not Harvard or Yale.

The time is upon us, united as friends

We can make anything grow.

Come join the party, sing and dance all the day,

Tomorrow we get out the vote.

We cry for the genocide, slavery, greed

That persists after thousands of years.

It’s late, but there’s time, if we really work hard

We can stop the torrent of tears.

Harold Lear’s Swan Song

Lear Dancer Lear passes Microphone to Norbert Lear Sings

Harold Lear’s Swan Song

Dr. Bob and the Disco Beaver played its last show ever at Speakeasy on March 6.  It was packed like sardines, which was appropriate, since many were initiated as “Honorary Newfoundlanders” by “kissing the fish” and slamming an insane Canadian whisky named “Screech,” at the end of the night.

Also onstage was the G-Jay band, with a recently revamped line up of Tim Crawford (saxophone), Norbert Morvan (vocals and MC “Royale”), Tony Boyd (bass), Gordon MacKay (guitar), Caleb MacIvor (keys, vocals, songwriter, originator, bandleader, task master and booking agent), Ed McEntee (drums), and Carlos Gentile (percussion).

The packed bar had barely enough room for dancers to improvise.  Couples were spotted doing the Mashed Potato, the Bus Stop, and the dance that has made Speakeasy famous, the “your-place-or-mine?”  And who could resist a swing around the dance floor with the blues-driven, hard-driving guitar riffs of Harold Lear and his accomplished band?

You could see the emotion of playing his last gig in Korea on Harold’s face, but he scored a tenured professorship in New Brunswick, Canada, and could not resist teaching sociology, though his PhD is in Eastern Philosophy. “My masters degree is in sociology, so it’s not a big stretch,” he said with his characteristic smile.  His music and merry-making will be much missed.  He named the night “Saturday Mayhem,” and it was not shocking that many who knew him from his latest stint in Suncheon made the trek to bid him adieu.

Not to be outdone (except notably on drums and guitar) the G-Jay band also got our feet moving, as Norbert toasted the crowd, and the band played funk, reggae and rock numbers from the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s, as well as Caleb’s soulful originals.  You couldn’t be faulted for thinking this band was formed at a catholic church, what with the Macs and Mcs, and it turns out bassist Tony Boyd hails from Scotland itself, thus not one of the millions that are part of the Irish and Scottish Diaspora.

As a music critic, I’d pick Tim Crawford as the undisputed star of the G-Jay band.  His sax riffs began halfway through the Disco Beaver’s first set (he was in the upstairs pool room, or precisely, in the kitchen/storage room next to it at the time).  His runs, more Charlie Parker than Eric Dolphy, kept going non-stop, except for a brief breathing period to walk downstairs and set his microphone height.  Did he “warm up” during the stage preparation? Yes.  Did his hyperkinetic, beautiful, lyrical alto sax solos continue through everything but other solos?  Indeed.  Was it a distraction to Norbert’s singing? I think not.  Why not?  Because Crawford is good.  Very good.

You can tell these guys love having a gig outside the realm of teaching English, as the pre-show banter was flowing like earth-rumbling splashes emanating from Viagra Falls.  “One night we had a small crown, maybe 12 people, but all 12 were dancing. One dude fell, broke our mike stand and knocked himself out.  We picked him up and he kept dancing,” McIvor said.  “We’ve made it into a Korean documentary, and play just about everywhere we can find.  On the originals I write the music, and Norbert writes the words…the songs grow organically.”

Many of the members are “lifers” in Korea, meaning, once they arrived here and discovered the gentle culture, sincere friendships and positive working conditions, they stayed for life.  Three are married, four are Canadian, two are from the US and one is Scottish.  They play out of Jeon Ju.  “Being right in the middle of the peninsula is an advantage when it comes to playing gigs all over the country,” MacIvor said.  He also said there were no “real leaders” in the band, and that they are “living the dream,” by being able to play so often.

“We changed a lot of songs this year, with new members.  Everyone brings in ideas for cover songs and then I shoot them down,” MacIvor said, laughing.  “We have an advantage because we can play sets of covers with just three members, so we’re flexible in case some people are too tied up to make a gig.”

Dr. Bob and the Disco Beaver played near-perfect renditions of classics like the James Gang’s “Funk 49,” Stevie Wonder’s “Superstitious” and, to allow a little improvisational guitar freedom, Hendrix’ “Voodoo Chile.”  G-Jay then kept the “Groove Thing” going with originals like “Faces,” and a memorable cover of the Specials “(a message for you ) Rudy.”  The trombones were not missed, with Crawford’s sax work, and the appropriate multicultural Specials were great to hear, as it had been a while, since there is nothing like a classic rock or rock station anywhere near Gwangju.  You would think GFN would cater to the tastes of the foreigners in town, with it being the Gwangju Foreigners Network, instead they play KPOP songs that are just as often from the bands managed by the director’s son than from KPOP itself.  There would still be plenty of time for a genuine rock hour or two per day, but helping foreigners feel at home is apparently not the goal of the station. I like what Pete Ross does, but his show is not rock either, but 75% mamby-pamby British obscurities.

This too is why the Disco Beavers will be missed, and why we hope the G-Jay band will be back.  Speakeasy impresario Derek does a great job locating Korea’s talent, and there is little doubt that new bands shall arise from the pool of English teachers.  There is no way any will touch the guitar mastery of Harold Lear though, as his musical resume includes a stint with Ringo Starr, and by golly, if Harold’s good enough to be a tenured sociology professor at New Brunswick, and has the musical chops to be Ringo Starr’s guitarist, that’s one mighty hard act to follow.

First Published in the Gwangju News:  http://www.gwangjunewsgic.com/

The Dinner Party Chapter 9

Dinner Party Chapter 9 Stuber

Jeanne Larsen, red hair flaming, carried a typewriter under her arm on the way to a small gathering of budding linguists at the north end of Ganandauguay. Flying Owl walked next to her carrying a 5,000-sheet box of copy paper. It had 1,000 sheets in it, the rest were stored carefully in Jeanne’s ganohso. Jeanne bought copy paper in batches of 5,000 sheets in her 20th Century life. It was the cheapest way to get paper in her day. The thought of 5,000 sheets of paper raced through her head as she realized she had to be very particular about paper usage.
She had already tried to remember the pre-amble to the constitution, parts of Lincoln’s Gettysburg address and the Declaration of Independence without much luck. The natives, however, were not keeping score.
Flying Owl had taught her most of the symbols for the natural kingdom, but they were a lot more straightforward than words! Jeanne worried that the alphabet may take too long to teach. But the time the Haudenosaunee had learned to spell, they might be under attack and in need of diplomatic negotiating skills. One thing was certain about these natives: they didn’t argue, negotiate or even vote in a peaceful way.
Flying Owl was determined to be able to battle the newcomers in any game of wits. Language was the only way to do that.
Flying Owl: Let me try to say your letters.
Larsen: OK
Flying Owl: A-B-C-D-E-F-G-I, I don’t remember the rest.
Larsen: You did very well for someone who is just starting to learn. Here.
Jeanne stopped walking near a young Sycamore tree. She handed Flying Owl a page with the alphabet lettered in capitals and lower case.
Flying Owl: AA-B-C-D-E-F-G-H-I-J, I for got J last time,-K-L-M-N-O-P-Q-R-S-T-U-V-W-X-Y-Z.
She had only been trained a couple of hours. Jeanne Smiled.
Larsen: You’ll make an excellent teacher.
They still had three miles to go, but Flying Owl sat down. She nodded her head in a sharp angled backward motion, smiled, and Jeanne sat down with her.

Stuber 9.2

Flying Owl: If we sit here long enough, Bobbing Tail will break her spying and join us.
Larsen: Bobbing Tail didn’t follow us away from camp.
F.O.: Yes she did.
Larsen: When I got up, I saw Fawn out by the fire and she said Bobbing Tail was still asleep. I went down to her house to see, and she was asleep. The sun is hardly up now, I’m sure if she followed us she would have caught up to us by now.
F.O.: Fawn was sending you after the turtle.
Larsen: What do you mean.
F.O.: I’m sure Bobbing Tail sent Fawn to be next to you so you would be certain Bobbing Tail was asleep.
Larsen: But Fawn was baking cornbread before I got to the fire.
F.O.: Bobbing Tail must have recovered completely from her losses. Her strategy is pretty good on this day.
Larsen: You’re paranoid and weird. Why would she want to spy on us. Number one, you’re her friend, number two, you’d tell her anything we did, and I was trying to get her to come to this lesson anyway!
F.O.: Number one: why should she trust what I say when her eyes and ears can interpret life for her. Number two: she can be jealous and she knows I like to play with men and women.
Larsen: I’ll hear none of that!
F.O.: I’m glad you said that.
Larsen: Why? Did you think I would have sex with you?
F.O.: No. I’m glad you said it, so that Bobbing Tail could hear you say it.
(They were whispering by now.)
Larsen: Will you quit that. Now, why are we sitting around.
F.O.: We can leave if you like. It might take an hour or more for Bobbing Tail to “catch up to us.”
Larsen: I’m sure she’s not even awake yet.
F.O.: Well, at least you followed our tradition, and didn’t disturb her dreams. Our minds are wonderful, but if you interfere with the gods who talk to us while
we are sleeping, they wouldn’t be happy, and bad things would happen to Bobbing

Stuber 9.3

Tail. So, if she was asleep, at least you did the right thing in letting her stay asleep.
Larsen: She would have yelled after us if she were following us.
F.O.: Not if she were spying.
Larsen: Why don’t you trust her, and why would she want to spy on a friend, I still don’t get it.
F.O.: It’s not a matter of trust. We believe in things we see ourselves.
Larsen: I see.
F.O.: you don’t see much. You are not watchful of the things around you. Again, it was nature that told you we were being followed, but you didn’t see it. The birds behind us have been scattering on our whole walk. Twice I heard twigs being shuffled in the woods.
Larsen: Any animal can move leaves around!
F.O.: But only humans scare birds. Why would a bird be scared of a rabbit?
Larsen: OK she’s followed us, still, we must move on to get to our lesson on time.
F.O.: What do you mean, “on time,” we said we would be there today.
Larsen: I wanted to start before the sun got to high in the sky.
F.O.: Why are you so concerned about when things start? Life goes on at its own pace.
Larsen: Alright. Why do you want Bobbing Tail to stop spying on us. Can’t we accomplish more if we go about our business, knowing that she’s watching?
F.O.: Now you’re catching on. I like that idea. But since we sat down, she’ll already suspect that we’re on to her.
Larsen: How could she know that?
F.O.: This sitting game is often played in these situations. Either the spy walks up to you, or they get tired and go away.
Larsen: What can we do to make her think this isn’t a game. I don’t have time for games, I just want to meet up with her and get to the language lesson.
F.O.: She would never believe we knew she was watching if you leaned over and kissed me.
Now Flying Owl was really fighting back a smile after that line.
Larsen: Considering all we have been through, that would be a small

Stuber 9.4

divergence.
She leaned over and gave Flying Owl a peck on the cheek.
F.O.: Thank you. What does divergence mean, exactly.
Larsen: If you were on a path and decided to walk straight up the hill rather than stay on the path, that would be a divergence.
F.O.: And why is kissing a friend a divergence?
Larsen: I guess it’s not.
F.O.: Well, here’s how we kiss our friends.
Flying Owl, who was sitting on the right side of Jeanne, slipped her hand under Jeanne’s right breast and passionately kissed her for thirty eight seconds. First on the mouth, than on the neck, then between her lips again. Just as Larsen’s defenses started to fade, a loud shriek came out of the woods. Flying Owl kind of knew what was coming next.
Jeanne pulled back and secured as Bobbing Tail came howling out of the woods.
F.O.: You have been spying on us Bobbing Tail.
Bobbing Tail: And you have spoiled our friendship Flying Owl!
F.O.: How did I do that?
B.T.: You were making love with Jeanne. I saw you.
F.O.: No, we were just resting on our long walk to the north end of the lake. Aren’t friends allowed to kiss?
B.T.: If I hadn’t stopped you, you would have been naked by now.
Larsen: I hate being used this way. Flying Owl you knew she would be watching, and you knew she would be mad at you. This is a hard time for you, and a vital time for your clan. We don’t have time for this.
F.O.: How did I know she would be mad, I had no idea she was on the path behind us. You said she was still sleeping.
Larsen: Sure you did, that’s why you sat down!
F.O.: No, I sat down to play with you, Jeanne.
Larsen: That’s it, I’m leaving!
Jeanne took her typewriter and paper and headed north on the path that followed the lake down its east side. It was a wide, much-traveled path. She was

Stuber 9.5

heading to a clearing when Flying Owl ran up to her and asked her not go off. Larsen flipped her head back, which gave her thick, curly, red hair a toss, and adamantly refused to go back into the woods.
Flying Owl understood, but offered to carry half her load for her anyway. Jeanne was happy to have a walking partner again.
Larsen: Is Bobbing Tail going to join us?
F.O.: Oh, is she coming now?
Flying Owl spun around to see if Bobbing Tail was headed down the path, but didn’t see anything.
Larsen: I guess not, I was just hoping to get her there. If the grieving wife of Running Bear is willing to come to the lesson, it will inspire the rest of the crowd.
Flying Owl nervously scrunched her shoulders in a questioning gesture and started to walk south.
Flying Owl: I’ll catch up to you.
With that, Jeanne started north and Flying Owl disappeared back into the woods. Now it was time for Bobbing Tail and Flying Owl to play the sitting game. Bobbing Tail was about 20 yards west of the path on a grassy knoll9 near the water. She was sitting behind a Blue Spruce. Flying Owl searched a good ways south on the path. Then she went down to the water and doubled back by swimming.
It was obvious now that Bobbing Tail was either back at the camp, having run there at full gallop, or she was playing hide-and-seek, not the sitting game.
The Haudenosaunee had their own rules for hide and seek that make the modern version of the game seem queer. A person could play hide and seek by simply hiding. No announcement of the game was needed. If you were walking with a friend, in a lull in the conversation you could sneak off the path behind your buddy and hide.
The other major difference in the game was that once you had a hiding place, you couldn’t move. Americans in the 20th Century had a penchant for the game, but were always breaking the rule of no movement. Americans, of course, would always announce the game, invite as many people to play as possible, and make a

Stuber 9.6

way of winning or losing out of it. That was the worst digression from the original game. Why should anyone lose? Once you find your friend, why shouldn’t you be able to enjoy their company? Why must someone always win or lose? (It was
the reaction the natives had to the diplomacy and negotiating lessons that Tolkien, Marley and Nostradamus were trying to teach back at the camp the night before.)
Meanwhile, Flying Owl swam up to the shore where she could see Bobbing Tail behind the tree. Bobbing Tail was sitting there in a type of trance. Flying Owl was concerned. Could Bobbing Tail go the way of so many other wives? Would she slip into a life of sadness, fits of depression, or even suicide?
Flying Owl also knew that Bobbing Tail liked to meditate, liked to play pranks, and liked to sit out hide-and-seek games for days, if her friends were dumb enough not to find her. These games could cause clan strife when they got as out of control as Bobbing Tail’s stunts. Of course, most of these were in her adolescence, nevertheless, Flying Owl decided to approach the scene with care.
Bobbing Tail had hidden from the path, but was a bare naked lady to the lake. Her breasts were gleaming, her hair was untied, and her lips started to smile, ever so slightly but her eyes remained closed. Flying Owl slipped quietly out of the water and took her leathers, which had been tied to her waist for swimming, and hung them on a tree to dry. Her naked toes sunk into the beach of shale and fossils. The black shale was warm, in some places hot. The heat on her feet kept her moving. She easily made enough noise for Bobbing Tail to hear her. Still, Bobbing Tail did not move.
Flying Owl’s knee twitched and almost buckled as she started up an incline. Nerves and anticipation combined to send pulses through her. Motor control was fading fast. She got so excited she stopped at a small pine to pee on the way up the hill. It was a Scotch Pine in its first full summer. Small lime-green pinecones were forming on the trees around her, a large sienna brown pinecone was bouncing off his head. There was no large pine near her. This was not a cone from the gods, but obviously one thrown by Bobbing Tail. Flying Owl quit peeing and walked toward her friend. Bobbing Tail remained unmoved.
The soft grass invited Flying Owl to sit next to her friend. She sat gently, as if

Stuber 9.7

no pine cone had been hurled. She sat in hopes that Bobbing Tail was in the midst of another playful prank.
A small wind blew for almost half an hour before Bobbing Tail slowly reached out her hand for Flying Owl. As soon as Flying Owl took it, the two tumbled downhill in a wrestling match the was no-holds-barred. First it was Bobbing Tail dominating. She had the element of surprise going for her. Then they rolled on top of each other, back and forth, scratching at each other, pulling hair, and even punching on the grass.
Bobbing Tail, now on her ass, skidded toward a tree. The grass stained her butt a yellowish hue, and she was about to tumble straight down the hill when her shoulder hit the tree and stopped her slide. She grabbed her shoulder and faked an injury which startled Flying Owl. Bobbing Tail took advantage of her concern by launching another attack. Flying Owl pulled away from the grabbing hands of Bobbing Tail, but not quickly enough. Bobbing Tail had grabbed her left breast, and as Flying Owl pulled away, she hurt herself, as Bobbing Tail used the force of Flying Owl’s retreat to, at one time, pull on the breast in her hand, and push Flying Owl’s pelvis with her feet.
The result was one elongated breast, pulled and pinched. {The equivalent of a kick in the balls, for you male readers out there.} Flying Owl was amused. Bobbing Tail picked up a four pound rock and split open her skin with a perfect shot to Flying Owl’s left temple. The two charged each other and rolled into the water. It was a soothing elixir for bleeding heads and painful nipples. Both laughed.
Flying Owl: That was a pretty good shot uphill.
Bobbing Tail: The next time you give me a breast pull, I’m going to come after you with a corn cob!
Flying Owl: Oh don’t act as old as you are!
Bobbing Tail: I know you’re poking fun at me, but my brain landed me a good life. You stayed on the course of the heart too long. When will you grow up.
Flying Owl: I don’t know what you’re talking about.
Bobbing Tail: When I confronted Catherine she started talking about us natives needing to grow up. I thought she was foolish since the Haudenosaunee are much taller than her kind!

Stuber 9.8

Flying Owl nodded, attentive to her friend.
Bobbing Tail: Then she said that she didn’t mean grow taller, but she meant to change our habits. She said I had good habits because I saw a good man in Running Bear, and mated with him. But she also said that our people play too much, and that we needed to work harder to make things better.
Flying Owl: If things were so good where she came from why is she here?
Bobbing Tail: Good point. Anyway, I told her that we had created a peace with five of the strongest tribes ever known, and because of that peace we have had many summers of harvesting and fun, with none of her ugly wars to think about.
Flying Owl: You said that to her!? She might have struck you dead right there. You got a lot nerve.
Bobbing Tail: Well, you’ve got the power and the heart to win most battles. Running Bear taught me to be a verbal battler.
Bobbing Tail, without whimpering or moving her body in hysterics, shed a tear.
Flying Owl: You’ll be alright.
Bobbing Tail: Just hug me.
Flying Owl and Bobbing Tail hugged. They separated and looked toward the lake. Bobbing Tail quickly forgot her troubles.
B.T.: I am wondering about Larsen’s walk north. Do you think she will be greeted by happy faces?
F.O.: I would think so.
B.T.: Our men don’t like to be told what to do about anything. Now this lady comes to us from what seems to be another time, and expects our men to listen to her about how to negotiate?
F.O.: I see what you mean, she could be in for it.
B.T.: She’s going to try to teach them her whole language. I still can’t figure out her symbols. And why so many symbols for each word?
F.O.: Maybe we should go and help her get through to people, but not until she has had a few hours with them.
B.T.: You’re smarter than you let on. Sorry about that crack about following

Stuber 9.9

your heart.
F.O.: That’s all right.
B.T.: No it’s not. Now I’m going against our traditions too.
F.O.: I can think of a few you won’t go back on.
B.T.: How’s your head?
Bobbing Tail leaned over to see if the blood was still oozing between the black hairs on Flying Owl’s temple. As Bobbing Tail searched her head, Flying Owl bent her neck and started to suckle Bobbing Tail’s right breast.
B.T.: Thank you for the idea, but I can’t fool around, I’m not in the mood. It will be months before I am over Running Bear.

 

 

 

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  • Before You Speak

    Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates. At the first gate, ask yourself, ‘Is it true?’ At the second ask, ‘Is it necessary?’ At the third gate ask ‘Is it kind? Rumi  Translated by Coleman Barks

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“The Dinner Party,” a novella in 11 chapters plus endnotes, copyright, Doug Stuber, 1992.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The Dinner Party Chapter 8

Dinner Party Stuber 8.1

Tad kicked a rock and smiled at Bob Marley. The warring troops were gone, the spies were in place. The spiritual temperature around Ganandauguay was heating up. Tad had figured out that it was probably Wide Hawk who talked to him in the Raspberry patch. Tad had observed his abilities: Wide Hawk’s consoling of Bobbing Tail and Fawn confirmed Tad’s belief that the shaman could tap the benevolent spirits whenever needed. It was 6:45 in the morning.
Marley was sitting with his knees pulled up to his chest. Kind of the Jamaican version of hunkering down, but a much easier position to hold for an hour or two if necessary. Tad’s thoughts of Wide Hawk were interrupted.
Marley: I had this terrifying dream last night.
Tad: That wouldn’t be surprising. This seems to be a wild dream area. Just look at the wild dreams Running Bear had about our arrival.
Marley: There is this hallucination who looks like some hula dancer trapped in my brain. She seems to be a spirit, but I can’t figure out what she says to me yet. Each day I concentrate on the spirit and try to bring her back so I can communicate with her while I am awake, but nothing works.
Tad: I’ve got a hint for you. Just go about your normal business. If you are being visited, your songs will show it. When you least expect it, the riddle will be solved.
Marley: I hope so, because these dreams leave me sweating and in a trance for hours when I wake up.
Tad: Are you sure that isn’t just a pot hangover?
Marley: I doubt it. I’ve never gotten any kind of hangover from pot. The only thing that can happen that is remotely like a hangover is that you just stay high.
Tad: I never smoked much of it. I had really bad lungs in my former life.
Marley: Former life is damn straight, this is the fourth place I’ve visited since dying.
Tad: Since dying? I don’t remember dying.
Marley: This must be your first post mortem experience then.
Tad: You mean I’m dead?

Stuber 8.2

Marley: Yeah, just like the zombies in Night of the Living Dead. You don’t know it, but you’re dead.
Tad: No wonder I have all these religious thoughts running around my head.
Marley: I think all my experiences have been the equivalent of some weird god’s sense of heaven.
Tad: You mean all your experiences have been just as strange as this one?
Marley: They sure have. I think it relates to the Harry James notion of separate universes. Do you know what I mean?
Tad: Not really. All I know is he and his family were some type of American philosophers.
Marley: Exactly. Only they were philosophers in a land and place and time that was so unique, their ideas transcend the philosophers of their era. It took decades of negative weirdo Dadaism and nihilism to catch up to the James family.
Tad: What do they have to do with this?
Marley: Like I said, I believe that we are the result of a decision that was made too late. Their theory states that every time any human being makes a decision, a separate universe opens up for whatever decision they make. For instance, if you make a decision to live a fun life, and just follow the Grateful Dead around, and go play music with your friends, the universe for those decisions had already been set up. Once you decide to do it, you can do it. All these separate universes exist at the same time. they are all out there, but we only see the ones we’ve decided to follow. Food clothing and shelter will be provided by the gods of the universe you decide to go for. Therefore, the human brain is a heaven of its own, if used effectively.
Tad: It all may be true, but what experiences have you had that make you think you’re a part of somebody’s alternative universe?
Marley: I’ll let you decide about how this dream we’ve fallen into is a separate universe. But if you agree with me that fits the scenario, then it will be up to all of us to discover who’s universe it is, when the decisions being made led us this way, and how to get out of this place.
Tad: The goal is to just clear out? I thought our goal was to leave this place better than when we found it.

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Marley: Look around. Not everyone has even opted for the peaceful course!
We could easily make a mess of this universe. It wouldn’t matter. The rest of the world will still go about their business based on the universe they have created for themselves in their living brains.
Tad: Now you’re going a bit too far.
Marley: The first people to read the James family ramblings felt the same way. It was because they were hundreds of years ahead of their time.
Tad: OK we’ll discuss you’re idea later. Now explain to me the three previous experiences you have had that make you think you’re dead.
Marley: In short, I was first in a bizarre world of nothing but color, then on earth again in what must have been the future. Maybe about the year 2500 or so. I then slipped back into the color world of being continually high after solving some very difficult problems of violence and, uh, widespread famine.
Tad: How could one person solve those problems in one lifetime?
Marley: It was easy. Don’t forget, if this is heaven, we all have a little Jesus in us. All you have to do is tap a whole ton of Jesus and you can solve any local, national, global or universal problem.
Tad: Well, let’s see how we do here.
Marley: This isn’t an unusual situation for me. The last time, my worst enemies were also from strange periods of time either way before or after whatever year I was in.
Tad: I guess there are examples of miracles coming true, but you’re saying that anyone, given enough faith, can tap into those miracles.
Marley: Absolutely. Look at my musical career.
Tad: You were great though.
Marley: Just lucky and determined, and blessed. Let’s take a look at how many prophecies Nostradamus was able to come up with hundreds of years before they came to pass.
Tad: He wasn’t perfect.
Marley: How do you think you would do trying to predict things hundreds of years into the future without any help but from planetary movements and meditating on the good vibes of the positive gods?

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Tad: I thought Nostradamus was a Christian Monk.
Marley: And Jesus is just one of the many positive spirits anointed by creatures all over the universe.
Tad: Hmm. Anyway, what about this crazy visitor from New Zealand.
Marley: I can’t really get a handle on much of it.
Tad: Maybe I can help. I lived in New Zealand for six months when I was a kid. Does your visitor have a name?
Marley: I can’t make out her language, but one of the words she says the most is something like Wairua.
Tad: Wairua, that sounds like a word I had on the license plate of one of my cars. The word was Waiata. It meant “party” in the Maori language. The Maori were a tribe of natives that lost a war in Hawaii and traveled by long canoes all the way to New Zealand.
Marley: Oh, sure, Hawaii to New Zealand by canoe. Sounds like a tougher trip than Cuba to Miami. How could they make it that long on the sea?
Tad: They had goats and dogs on board. Even chickens. The eggs and meat obviously lasted long enough for them to sail right by Micronesia and Macronesia. It is believed some ended up in Tahiti, but the majority made it all the way to New Zealand.
Marley: Wild. If this Wairua lady is really from a New Zealand tribe, this dream is like the United Nations of indigenous people!
Tad: I guess so. If you count the one and only Bob Marley being the vehicle for an ancient goddess. It sounds like a cross between Shirley MacLaine and Doonesbury if you ask me.
The two were sitting in the grass on a point that had plenty of flat land that had been created by the deltas of small creeks. The southern end of the lake featured steep cliffs diving to 300 feet of water. You could step out in the water maybe ten or fifteen paces before dropping off to a steep decline. The water by the points was shallow for quite a ways due to a constant influx of fresh pebbles. The two waded in.
Marley: This water sure is refreshing.
Tad: Mighty cold though.
Marley: Not on a hot day like today.

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Tad: It will take me a while to get used to anything cold. Before I dropped in here, I had lung disease and heart problems. I used to have to carry my oxygen around on my back. It was a medical discovery that became a phenomenon after you died. Eventually, you could see people carrying their oxygen around in almost any shopping mall. Anyway, all my physical problems cleared themselves up when I showed up here. Then I got visited by this medicine man. I think it was Wide Hawk.
Marley: Why wouldn’t you know for sure who it was? Was it in a dream like mine?
Tad: No, he was with me, but wearing a mask. He talked to me about becoming the spiritual leader of our group.
Marley: Do you mind if I smoke?
Tad: I guess not.
Marley: It will help me meditate on this problem of Wairua and her New Zealand pals.
Tad: Maori, they call themselves Maori.
Marley lit up a peace pipe. He had traded a bright colored hat for the pipe, two friendship bracelets and leather shoes. He had felt out of place in sneakers. After three or four puffs, Tad reached over and had a smoke himself. The two sat in silence for some time.
Marley: This Wairua is not the name of my visiting goddess I think her name is Papa. She said she is the earth goddess. She’s telling me that she mated with the sky god Rangi, but after bearing seventy children, evil took over and she was separated from her love. She said that I am a matakite. It means she thinks I have a second sight. I guess she thinks I’m a psychic. She’s wrong on that one.
Tad: You may be one without knowing it. A lot of things from our previous lives appear to be changed here. Plus, don’t you think some gods were looking over you in your time on earth?
Marley: Maybe.
Tad: Maybe? You represented the struggles of your entire people. That privilege isn’t handed out to just anyone.
Marley: These matakite people are supposed to listen to the feelings they

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receive from Papa. The feelings are delivered through Wairua. Aha, that’s what a Wairua is!
Marley’s eyes remained closed, he was zooming in on the cosmic debris, trying to come up with the good stuff while talking to somebody he didn’t even know. Tad was sitting in amazement. He wasn’t sure whether Marley was tripping, pulling his leg, or actually recounting some mysterious messages from the gods.
Marley: She is saying that the Wairua is our soul. She says that the soul leaves the body when you die, but that it also leaves the body when you are sleeping or dreaming. This Wairua can travel the world and bring back knowledge from other places as long as a matakite is open to receiving. Papa’s Wairua is visiting me because my Wairua had been visiting her.
Tad: This is amazing. Maybe my stay in New Zealand in 1972 had something to do with this too. The shaman who talked to me through a mask suggested that I become the spiritual leader, but maybe it should be you.
{These two are full of themselves aren’t they?}
Some sea gulls called to each other.
Marley: There must be more important subjects.
Tad: I was thinking about the miscarriage that Fawn was yelling about.
Marley: What about it?
Tad: I seem to remember the Maori having some very strange beliefs about miscarriages. One of the Maori girls in my brother’s high school had a miscarriage, and she didn’t show up in class for weeks. Afterward, she became a paranoid mess. It ruined her certification tests. She ended up failing, which meant no shot at university. It was a real tragedy because she was mighty smart, at least how my brother told it.
Marley: Well, that will give me something to talk about with this spirit I am communing with.
Tad: I’ll let you commune. I’ve got to find Jeanne Larsen and borrow some writing material so I can write out what I remember about the Maori beliefs, especially the miscarriage omen.
Marley: See you around.
Tad got out of the water and headed back to the collection of Ganohses that

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made up the meeting place. The trek was up hill but he had no problem walking to his unfamiliar surroundings in the village. He was free to walk around without the pain of physical travails. He smiled then quickly cried as he realized he may be free, but that he was probably dead. He took ten steps and shook it off because he knew the challenge of keeping his fellow invitees in order was going to keep his moments busy. No time now to ponder the consequences of slipping into another dimension.
He saw Jeanne Larsen leave from Bobbing Tail’s sleeping quarters. He borrowed 20 of sheets of paper from her and headed into the house he had been sleeping in. He kept the flap open for light and sat near the doorway writing.
He wrote: I’m glad I’ve got warm clothes because I know this place. I am sitting on the east side of Canandaigua lake, it seems like about August or maybe late July. It can’t really be the era right before European colonization, because I am here. I guess I’m dead. The Indians are all weirded out by our being here, so I’m sure this is an alternative universe, like the kind Bob Marley says Henry James talked about. Who the hell was Henry James, I don’t know, but I appear to be the only visiting time-traveler who has been to this exact place before. Between 1966 and 1978 we lived right on the lake. We were over on the west side. Tichner’s Point to be exact. Maybe it’s my prior knowledge that makes me the right choice to be the religious guru of the peaceniks. What a weird job-description.
I can’t believe “Stephanie” is here. When she danced topless in front of the fire I wanted to take her hand and start a horizontal mosh pit. I had no idea I’d be able to dance hard, no less keep up with her all night. It feels great to be walking around, running around, playing lacrosse all afternoon without even being winded.
{Tad opened his wallet and looked at a few pictures before he kept writing.}
I’m sure I would have had Kim or Sharon for life if I had been this free in my last shot at an existence. A long list of beauties from my previous life just reappeared from my wallet. What a life. One of the best weeks I can remember was bombing around Edinburgh Scotland during the 1987 British Open. It was a pretty good summer. My whacko brother had sent in 100 postcards to ESPN to try to win a trip to Scotland. The promotion was called “Tee Time in Scotland.” He had predicted different winners on each card. He had even drawn charicatures of the players he liked best, or knew how to draw. I laughed my butt off when he spent the

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$15.00 to send them in. Then he laughed his butt off when they sent him a letter saying that, out of 35,000 postcards received, they had picked his.
Anyway, we were floating from one pub to another with these two other winners, a guy named Bill and his sister Mary. At this one pub Doug and Mary broke away from us and ran down the hill and turned a left. I was stuck with fucking Bill all night. The reason Doug and Mary had run away was because Bill had thrown a glass at a guy and almost got the four of us into a major U.S. versus Scotland bar brawl. We surely would have lost. But Bill was the type of ass-hole, who, after winning a trip on the Concorde to fly at supersonic speeds with twenty of the best golfers in the world, shows up at the airport in New York in blasted cutoffs. Raggy. dirty, smelly cutoffs, an Ozzy Osborne muscle T-shirt and black converse sneakers.
Fuzzy Zoeller took one look at the guy, turned away from him, laughed his ass off and asked us if we wanted a drink. Who’s going to turn down a beer with Fuzzy? We laughed about this “red-neck on the concord” the rest of the way.
So there we are in Scotland, the only country with more bar-fights per capita than Ireland, and Billy boy decides to throw a full pint of the Queen Anne Pub’s home-brewed Lager at some bloke who’s hitting on his sister. Can’t say I blame Doug and Mary for running away from that one, but here I was stuck with Mr. Billy, the raving Maryland destroyer. If I’d been in the kind of shape I’m in now, the fifteen pints at fifteen pubs we had consumed wouldn’t have slowed me down in my quest to rid myself of this buffoon. Of course, I never would have met Jennifer. She was a red-haired wonder. (Is everyone in Scotland slightly red-headed or what?) Jennifer would have been another full-blown soul-mate if only I had been in this kind of beautiful physical shape back then. Right, back then in 1987. It seems like I’m some time in the 1700s now. {Tad was never very good at history. He wrote on:}
Love’s lost, what a sap. A conquest of “Stephanie” is in order. She’s the Victoria’s Secret type not the “rough and tumble” Jessica appears to be. I’ll have to woo her. Go right up to her and woo-woo her, that’s the ticket. In fact maybe I should try that game of three questions Wide Hawk was teaching me. How does

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that go again? The first two questions are always somewhat misleading, and are meant to keep your playing friend at bay. They only hint at the real question you
want to ask.
It would have to go something like this:
Tad: I have a game of three questions, will you play?
“Stephanie”: What type of questions will they be?
Tad: The first two will be questions of time, the last one will be a straightforward yes or no question.
“Stephanie”: That seems like an innocent enough trio. Go ahead, let’s play.
Tad: Do you think forty minutes is just the right amount of time, too long a time, or not enough time to perform cunnilingus on a women?
At first “Stephanie” would be shocked by this question, but then she’d answer the question. {Tad wrote.}
“Stephanie”: Would this be continual, regardless of orgasms?
Tad: Yes. In other words could you stand forty minutes, would it be too much for you, or would you want your man to go more than forty minutes with the love tongue, even if you had twenty orgasms?
“Stephanie”: Forty minutes would be fine, I’d want to harden his hanging meat while he was at it. You wanna know my favorite these days? Right now I’d like to jump up and saddle-ride Marley until he burst with joy.
Tad: Marley, hmmm, I see. Okay, second question: When was the last time your heart went pitter-patter like the first time you were in love during adolescence?
Stephanie would stand there for a while giving that one some thought.
“Stephanie”: That question’s a ball-buster. Only once since I was 18 really. That one time was just the other day.
Tad: Don’t tell me who it was. I’ve had a flutter in my heart recently too.
“Stephanie”: What is your last question.
Tad: You got forty minutes to spare?
“Stephanie”: Well, uh.
Yeah, like you’re really going to try to pull some native’s idea of a bar line on

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the world’s perfect torso. Well, it would be worth a try.
{Tad’s writing was quickly interrupted from across the middle of the filed that housed the ganohses.}
Larsen: Hey Tad, you want to join us for a negotiating lesson at the end of the lake?
Tad: No thanks, I’m going to stay here and write.
Oh yeah, Tad thought, I was supposed to be writing about the Maori beliefs of
miscarriage. Shit, how did that go again.
{Tad wrote:}
Wairua is the spirit that gives things life. That spirit is in everything, not just living things, but everything. If the Wairua of an unhappy man who dies gets free, it can come back to haunt the living. It can cause damage. In the case of a miscarriage, the Wairua often acts like a war god. The Wairua of an unborn child has to be kept away, or, has to be kept happy, otherwise it will start a war. That’s it.

 

 

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  • Before You Speak

    Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates. At the first gate, ask yourself, ‘Is it true?’ At the second ask, ‘Is it necessary?’ At the third gate ask ‘Is it kind? Rumi  Translated by Coleman Barks

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“The Dinner Party,” a novella in 11 chapters plus endnotes, copyright, Doug Stuber, 1992.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The Dinner Party Chapter 5

Dinner Party Chapter 5 Stuber 5.1

Running Bear, having split the tribe into two equal parts, was the object of much scorn. He stalked the outskirts of the ganohsot at night. Walking over land and twigs, he didn’t make a sound. Cool air came off the lake, sending a shiver his way. He was always in thought. Was he doing the right thing? Would the sacrifices of war help his way survive, or hasten its demise? The tribe saw a firm man, confident in his will to fight. The tradition of his position determined his public personality. The traditions of his tribe made a decision to fight.
“But am I this man, or is it just show? Am I man enough to stare down the younger men who dance for war, or am I a flea-bitten adulterer?” Running Bear thought. The dichotomy of his loyalty to the peace under the Great White tree, as personified by Bobbing Tail and Fawn, and his new-found love of Catherine, and her warring desires, was tearing him apart.
He walked to the lake and squatted. His feet flat, arms around his knees, carefully balanced. This is not a proven thought-provoking position, (See hunkering down as a Georgia Bulldog [no thought there] or Popeye’s hunker in uncle Bill’s “Sanctuary.”) but, without the benefit of comparison, merely a comfortable way to ponder fate in the wake of the moon’s reflection on Ganandauguay.
He could skip rocks from this position, And he did. He could see the bounces on the lighted lake. He could count a four-skipper, now a seven. He could feel the arrows in the air before they arrived. He jumped to the left and heard humans running away,
The average man would run in chase, or run away, or scream, or wet his pants, or at least tell people of the incident the next day.
Running Bear returned to shore after checking to see if the assassins would try again. When he found that they had left, he assumed they were from the peacenik whites. Members of his tribe would never run away from what sounded like a three against one. He assumed it was three runners. But, considering how much noise these apparitions make, he rethought that it could have easily been one or two of his uninvited guests.

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Two-inch waves lapped up to his feet. He imagined large carp sleeping with clear eyelids, barely moving between the weeds. He thought the fishes god had given them a peaceful life. he wondered if they ever had to ponder decisions with such grave consequences.

* * * * *

Catherine felt free to hang on his arm the next morning before the meeting about war.
“Don’t be sorry about how you feel,” Catherine said. “Doing that will just allow their foolish arguments to seep in!”
“I am torn between what has been my way for years, and your new ideas. I should rightfully back a peaceful track but you have stirred an ancient warrior,” Running Bear said.
“If you let your people fend for themselves, history proves out that your way of life will capitulate to the white men that are coming. If you wait to fight the whites here you won’t have enough force to win the war. You will have to retreat, your people will die of unknown diseases,” Catherine said. “These white people are my people, and compared to you, we live unnaturally. You must defend the world’s natural course!”
Running Bear shuffled his feet, kicking a pebble from one foot to the other as he pondered the fate of his tribe. He wondered whether he would be able to convince longtime enemies that they had to fight together to stop the invading whites. According to these aliens, whites had already arrived in the lands to the east. In those lands, he was told, the whites would have starved if the native humans hadn’t helped them. It was hard for him to believe that these people would be so greedy as to kill their protectors.
“I am going to ask the men to join me in this fight. Whoever wants to try to convince other humans to war with us will be in the party when we head east, but I will not require that everyone come. Cowards are free to stay here and wait for their fate.”
Catherine felt an inner glow. She knew that in her lifetime, fighting idiots in

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control no only gained her power, but felt good during the battle as well. The was prepared to go fight the English invaders. Why settle for an enlightened court in Russia, when she could start a whole new culture with her new friends here, then return to her real life in Russia later! It would be good practice, she thought Calvinistically, and might help her prevent the downfall of enlightenment in Russia that was apparent before her death. She did not ponder whether setting an entire country’s worth of natives to war would impale her on a bigger badder petard in some level of hell even Dante hadn’t pondered.
The fire from the night before was smoldering. Running Bear could not remember such a wild time of sending arguments over the fire. The women and men seemed split on this one. But it was possible that the majority would not go his way. Tradition meant no decision until the idea was unanimous.
He continued to kick a pebble when Jeanne Larsen and Duane Allman happened by and offered a hacky-sack instead.
“Here man, try kicking this around,” Allman said. Duane had become a little better in just a couple days, as, by his standards, there wasn’t much to do other than smoke hemp and goof around. He wasn’t happy without an amp, a Les Paul, and a screaming crowd or a recording engineer prodding him along. Yet, this dream he fell into was making him more creative than ever. he had already kicked the sack with the bottom of his foot back over his shoulder and into play in a move Jack and Larsen had never seen before.
It had happened about two hours of playing-time into his career. Corcoran sent a shot, more like the bona fide toe-job you see in junior high school fullbacks, clear over Allman’s head. Instead of turning to pick up the sack or make a Pele-style turning back kick out of it, he backpedaled, planted his left foot and kicked, kind of like a reverse mule, his right foot while quickly bending his knee upwards.
The resulting shot line-drive past his bent back to the upper thigh of a surprised Jeanne Larsen who did two thigh reverses down to a balance job on her left foot followed by a perfect inner foot pass to an amused native. It was Allman’s play, however, that endeared both the whites to their playful new friends. From then on they had varying size crowds of all ages trying to understand their games, and the stories of the century they came from.

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Allman, Larsen and Running Bear started a game while members of various clans started eating their morning meals. The Heron clan was the most vociferous the night before, and the most creative around the morning fire. Their food was more than cornmeal. They made a morning mixture of cooked duck eggs and beans, and had a sweet substance to put on their cornbread.
As leader of the Turtle clan, Running Bear’s curiosity about the visiting clan’s food caused him to abruptly quit the hack sack game.
Jeanne plaintively attributed his leaving their three-way circle to embarrassment. She understood that a leader wouldn’t want to be exposed to the ridicule of fellow tribesman, even if they couldn’t play the game either. What she didn’t understand was Running Bear’s hunger.
“It’s too bad he didn’t stay long enough to learn,” Jeanne said.
“Well, it’s not that easy,” Duane said, increasing his legend while securing a fullback position in case his game fell off a little bit. It had a real chance of falling off after smoking the brand a hemp the natives in these parts grew too.
Running Bear sat down in the middle of the Heron clan and asked if he could sample their food. The move was more political than he had originally intended. The clan knew he was trying to go against their wishes because a leg-weary Bobbing Tail came off the hill about four am and had talked all night with Flying Owl, a loyal cousin who was a blast to stay up with. Flying Owl, one of the behind-the scenes leaders of the women of the Heron clan, was much more interested in the tongue play of Woolf, Bobbing Tail and Jessica, but Bobbing Tail was firm in her telling of the split Catherine had caused by first seducing Running Bear, then seducing war.
The Heron clan was leery. Was Running Bear at their breakfast to invade their circle and sway them to war, or could they use this chance to impress peace upon him?
“You are welcome to sit with us. Here is our morning meal, enjoy it,” Big Deer said in a curt tone.
Running Bear was happy to taste the bean-egg mix, but, as soon as he was done, he wanted to try the syrup on cornbread he had seen others eating. His breakfast group was more interested in feeling out the upcoming day.
“It seems you are insistent on going to fight these white people. Are you going to

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split off and go no matter what we say?” Big Deer asked, expressing the feelings of the whole clan.
“I think there will be enough smart men who want to save their communities. I don’t think we can save our people by waiting to be attacked,” Running Bear said.
“To make a decision without unanimity will break the sacred laws we have lived by for centuries. Why would you do this at the insistence of a woman who is herself white?” Big Deer asked.
Running Bear fumed that everyone knew of his affair with Catherine. It wasn’t just that Bobbing Tail had made a big stink among the women of the Heron clan, but that Catherine went around parading their new love.
“She is from the future. he friends and their gadgets, and what they know prove that they are more than gods. If they know that our way of life will be threatened unless we fight, why are you having such a hard time dealing with the realities we face?” Running Bear retorted.
“Our reality has been a good one because of peace. If you take half our men or more and create a new war, you are spitting on all the ancestors that strived to keep this a peaceful place.”
“You will never convince me that waiting for our fate to be dealt to us is better than taking our fate into our own hands and protecting our lifestyle by keeping the marauders away. You are free to stay here and wait for our triumphant return, but it will be our bravery that saves this way of life, not your cowardice.”
So much for Running Bear getting any of the sweet desert he had hoped for.
“Your arrogance is to be expected. I am amazed that you are Onondowagan, but the Turtle clan always has felt superior. We will see how you fare against the beliefs of the Mohawks and Cayugas when we are all gathered later today,” Big Deer said. His clan had been mumbling about their conversation. Running Bear excused himself before getting too many force lined up against him. He had to have his own tribe with him when he spoke later that morning, and, without the Heron clan, that was going to be hard to do.
One stand of trees away, Bobbing Tail was crashed out with Flying Owl. Flying Owl stirred, and quietly got up and meandered away from the small clearing in the

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woods and into the light of the larger meadow that ran from the water’s edge all the way up Bare Hill.
That left Bobbing Tail to dream of the encounter the night before. It is hard to shape dreams, that is what makes them so much fun. For all her trying, Bobbing Tail could not bring back Jessica from the previous night’s encounter. Maybe Jessica only watched. Maybe she couldn’t make the jump into homosexuality, and thus was left to satisfy herself as the others went on.
It was the vision of Jessica masturbating that finally broke through and hit Bobbing Tails dream. Jessica was perched on a large rock, maybe eight feet wide and almost flat on top. While Bobbing Tail and Stephanie were teasing Kandinsky, Woolf had snuck up behind Jessica to get a better view of what she was doing to herself on the rock.
Suddenly a rush of adrenaline surged through Bobbing Tail’s body. She was approaching orgasm. Flying Owl shook her shoulder and woke her up.
“You just ruined my wet dream. Your sense of timing is hideous.”
“After all you did last night you’re still having sex in your dreams?”
“Sex, hemp and lacrosse, isn’t that what summer’s all about?”
“Not once you have children,” Flying Owl said with a smile.
The two of them howled with laughter. They were part of a tribe that had forgone some of the old ways in order to have more fun. With many years of peace between them and having to work for a living, the two were free to remain playful for their entire lives. The laughter wasn’t all humorous though. The jitter of war snuck in, and both knew the chuckles would soon be replaced with tears.
In the meadow, Jeanne and Duane had picked up Bob Marley and a couple of natives in a widening circle. Running Bear returned to try his foot at it.
“This game requires some skill, but it is not as instructive as lacrosse. Lacrosse teaches out young men much more about life. How to win wars. how to survive,“ Running Bear said.
“Yeah, but this game was invented long after war was necessary,” Marley replied.
“Long after it was necessary, but not long after it was abolished.” Larsen pointed out.

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“We had wars in our century just so that people could make huge profits, and keep the rich rich and the poor poor,” Allman interjected.
“In each tribe there is a level of richness that is shared. Is that not true where you come from?” Running Bear inquired.
The hackys had been started by the whites until then, but now the natives didn’t mind starting a kick. One picked up the sack and kicked it with the inside of his feet three times before passing it to Jeanne.
“Good play,” she said.
Marley couldn’t resist more socio-banter. “In our century everyone was out for themselves. There were some tribes who helped each other out and shared the wealth they had gained, but most people were only helped by their families in terms of survival.”
“That’s what I mean,” Running Bear said. “My family is the Turtle clan, but my larger family is the Onondowagas, and that family belongs to the Haudenosaunee. If any of our family members are in trouble, we are there to back them up. Likewise, if there are riches to share due to a good corn crop, we all get together and share them. I still don’t understand how your century worked.”
“Look,” Duane said, “each man had a wife and their children made up the family. In terms of helping people out, you might go so far as to help out the children of your brother or sister, and you might help your grandchildren, but blood families were as far as the economic or emotional help usually went where I lived.”
“We had some people who lend a hand on my island,” Marley said, “but Duane is right, this area became famous for people just hogging their wealth and ignoring the needs of their fellow humans.”
“This is a terrible fate,” Running Bear said. “This place should never be inhabited by greedy people. It is too cold in the winter here for people to be selfish.”
“That is why we are here, I think,” Jeanne said, “to make sure your way of life is not just saved, but passed to all people.”
“The problem is, my people are divided as to how to do this.”
“So are the invites to this strange party we’re having here.”
Half think we should learn to negotiate on your terms, the way you think, the

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other half agree with Catherine and myself that the best way to save our niche is to hold the white people from coming here at all,” Running Bear said.
“We are ready to fight,” one of the native hack players said between volleys.
“He’s about fifteen right?” Jeanne asks.
“Yes.”
“High in hormones and ready to let it all hang out in war.”
“He is a good example of how we are divided. It is a male-female split. It is bad enough that we have a war brewing, but that we are split male against female will be hard to resolve.”
The hack game continues. The young native hates to be talked about in the third person even though he is there.
“Why don’t you ask directly, to all the people. I am sure you will have a majority,” the youngster boldly suggested.
“I don’t know why you are dreaming of war. I have been influenced by these spiritual guests. I have hard dreams to follow too,” Running Bear replied.
“I died before I could see any of my dreams realized,” Marley said. “But the world was getting to the point where people either had to share everything, or all humanity would be lost. Greed was making many people starve while the rich continued to use up the resources. Technology could have saved humanity, but it was used to make the rich richer instead. If you go to war to save your way of life and lose, there won’t be any ancestors left to try to revive your traditions in time to save humanity. If you learn from us the best ways to negotiate, maybe more of your ideas will be incorporated into this part of the planet. That way humans may have a longer stay around here. The greedy way gives humans only a fraction of the time they would have had if they had adopted your way.”
Maybe you have a good point Marley, but I still have a difficult decision to make. I have already ruined my marriage, I would hate to make another hasty change of plans that would ruin everything we know as well,” Running Bear said.
There were still a few hours before he had to make the opening speech, so Running Bear excused himself from the game and headed toward his favorite point on

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the lake. It was about a two mile hike, so he quickly realized he would not be able to take refuge there, think for a while and make it back in time for his speech. It no longer mattered that he would open the argument. The lines were drawn. he headed for the rocky shore below the gathering. His steps were in one line. He had noticed that the whites walked “east and west” with their feet wide apart. Naturally, his steps were one foot in front of the other. it was a gait developed while deer hunting. A much quieter approach to walking.
Running Bear decided to walk and swim the two miles. There were flat paths a few hundred yards past the hill, but he enjoyed the contours of the shore, the shale and fossils strewn in his path, and the opportunity to swim.
“I hope you didn’t confuse the man, “ Duane said.
“Confuse him? That was my last chance to get his head on straight about how to deal with your European ancestors. I had to deal with the realities of oppression, so don’t talk to me about confusing anybody.”
“Uh, excuse me Bob, you got a good point there.”
It seems to me that we’re going to have some people going to fight a war, and others staying behind to survive in peace,” Jeanne said. “If we are to do our best, we should strategize about how to each them.”
“We should get Nostradamus, Tolkien and Kandinsky in on this,” Duane said.
“Jessica and Katherine B. should be able to help too,” Jeanne said.
A lot of whites weren’t taking sides because they were having too much fun with their new friends. We will have to see whether Jeanne and company will ever find Nostradamus and his native girlfriend. As they ponder a day of warm-up peace talks, a lone native stands by the shore of the lake that gives his tribe meaning. Their home spot, the chosen place, Ganandauguay.
A large round rock splashes into the water, entering with a Ch-thud of a sound. The hurler is disappointed, hoping for more of a “Schunk.” The type of throw that, no matter how big the rock, enters the water at such a perfect angle as to defy physics. The throw that causes the splash to fold over itself, with the rock, he imagines, moving ten feet under the water all at one time before slowing down in its drift to the bottom.

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Running Bear has played these games before. Usually without so much on his mind. Usually in the summers of his youth. Usually without having to worry about
who might have followed him away from the circle of ganohsots this time.
This time the moon serves no warning. This time Running Bear expires. This “time,” the Onondowagas mark forever as the last time their tribe knew the peace under the great white tree.

* * * *

No one knew about his death.
The average conference attendee was being summoned to more demonstrations of gadgetry, some sport-playing for the youngsters, and heated debates in three circles, the crowds around which fully seventy five percent women.
Circle One: Kandinsky, Larsen, Allman, Tolkien and Woolf – in . Out – mostly younger, fifty folks, few young men.
Circle Two: Marley, Corcoran, Nostradamus (more on how Corcoran found him later) Jessica, Stephanie and Jack – in. Out – Two of the most important elders of the Mohawk tribe, their children, relatives and clan members, few young men.
Circle Three: Katherine B., Catherine the Great, Big Deer, Tad and Flying Owl – in. Out – The largest crowd of all. Hundreds of people, few young men.
The young men that were visible were mostly swimming, chasing after each other, or playing catch with lacrosse sticks carefully crafted of bent woods that took days to bend, steam, bend into shape. The sticks, now (‘95) all but gone except for a few women’s teams, had leather thongs woven to form deep pockets, walled with tied cat gut. The boys made their own if they were lucky enough to have an in with the crafts women. You had to get “in” otherwise suffer the humility of playing with an old uncle’s stick, or, worst of all, some toss off stick nobody used anymore.
The boys quickly learned to tie their own knots, improve sticks, and disfigure the stolen sticks of enemy players so they couldn’t be recognized in a future game. Getting caught with an opponent’s stick could lead to the outbreak of knife fights, tomahawk

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battles and blood loss. Far better to fend off the snickers of the young women and brave the stick demands of the crafts ladies. This assured you a good stick, and taught you more crafty tricks than the young girls knew. Thus the crafts ladies served the dual-instructional role.
Tad: Frankly lady, I can’t abide your ugly warring ways. Where the hell is Running Bear? He’s going to come here, address the crowd and blow your ass out of the water.
C. the G.: I don’t remember how you got here, or why you’re here, but I led the world’s greatest country. When I first heard your music from that machine I was slightly amused, but your change of heart from the sensible defense of this land, to the peacenik soft, suicidal side of the argument is short-sighted.
Tad winced, but struck back: “We have the brains to teach these people well. We are young enough to negotiate the same type of arrangement the Maoris hammered out in 19th and 20th Century New Zealand. And I’m here as a friend of the author.”
“I don’t know what your talking about, but. . .”
“I do,” Katherine B. chirped up. “The Maori make up 35 percent of the population, and they have 35 percent of the seats in Parliament. If the elections are anywhere near close between labor and conservatives, they have an automatic swing vote. This way the natives at least kept control of a good hunk of the land in a very small country, with very little to spare of fertile land.”
“I have already rounded up the troops.”
“Look here you cootie-ridden slut, you stole my best friend’s husband, I have no idea who the hell you think you are, but I doubt the men will go without Running Bear, and I doubt Running Bear will ignore his entire tribe to risk war with you as a leader!” Flying Owl yelped.
The outbreak started to spread to the crowd. People started taking sides. Flying Owl pulled Tad aside and asked why he had had a change of heart.
“In just two days I have learned a lot about your reverence for nature, and your spiritual awareness. I could no longer back violence,” Tad said.
“No one would tell you our thanksgiving prayers or let you into our secrets, so I assume your change of heart was of your own doing,” Flying Owl replied.
“I sat with five youngsters who talked and danced one night. The next morning

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I was woken up by a man in a wooden mask. He took my hand and led me to a raspberry patch. We sat there eating raspberries when he started to talk from behind the mask.”
“He wouldn’t let you see his face?” she asked.
“No, he talked clearly though. There must have been great acoustics coming from the mask because it appeared to be thick solid wood, but he sounded as clear as a bell. Anyway, he was explaining to me how lucky I had been to live so long during my first life. That if I hadn’t been charged with spiritual “friends” in my first life I never would have survived.”
“So.”
“Well, there is no way he could have known it, but I had severe heart and lung problems that caused complications throughout my life. At least three times medical advancements came along just in time, or I would not have survived. All I’m saying is that he was right, he knew all about me.
“Our spiritual elders are very perceptive that way,” Flying Owl said.
“This guy wasn’t old, or if he was he sure was in great shape.”
“You will find very few of our men out of shape.”
“He said it would be boring for him to run down the list of things he knew about me, but said that my belief in the gods was the reason I was here. He was hinting around that he wanted me to become the spiritual leader of the guests who are here.”
“That might be a great idea. Your type is a long way from nature, thus further away from the gods. See what you can do to bring them back,” Flying Owl said as a tussle broke out between three women fighting over whether to send their sons to war. “Look you smelly old lady, my son died playing those stupid war games. When we gave up war,” said the lady from the Oneida tribe, “we should have given up those games too. Youngsters are influenced by the violence around them, it is your insane tribe that kept the games alive!”
“Games have nothing to do with this white serpent who is dragging our men off to war,” the Mohawk lady insisted.
“The Mohawks never have to be dragged to war,” the Onondowagan women clarified.

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“What are you going to do about this Catherine female?” an onlooker implored.
“There isn’t much we can do, short of talking directly to the men who are swayable. I see Big Deer has been hard on the charge for peace,” Flying Owl said.
“True enough,” Katherine B. said, “this circle all agrees. Maybe we should join the circle with Jack in it to get him to come around to our side.”
“It won’t do any good. I have award-winning arguments being presented in every crowd. And fired up warriors wait in three locations for our command. As soon as Running Bear gets back from his swim, we will order the men east. The key to any war is logistics. I don’t mean to bore you, but we have the runners, scouts, women helpers and spies already lined up. The more who want to join the better. You can’t do anything to stop us now,” Catherine said.
“Yeah, but we can sway over half the people into staying here!” Tad said.
All but Catherine meandered toward the circle that found Jack and Jessica taking a tongue lashing from the crowd. Jessica was starting to fade, but Jack was gung-ho for a little fun. He figured his superior knowledge from the 20th Century would make a simple ground war against the feeble Puritans more of a month-long romp than a disheartening bloodbath. Maybe he forgot how long a walk it was from Victor New York to Plymouth Mass.
Marley and Nostradamus formed a philosophical core that quickly engulfed Corcoran and Stephanie by sheer magnetic force.
“I feel sorry for you Jack. Your going to bust your hump trying to change history, knowing that you really can’t, and for what? Do you think your likeness will show up on some 20th Century painting, thus proving to Shirley MacLaine and her group that you’re really a reincarnated Onondowagan warrior? As you will recall, most of the paintings of Indians were done much later than this, and out west. The only recordings of the goings on between the French and Indians around here were done by that goofy catholic cleric. His line drawings weren’t worth a poo,” Stephanie said.
“What do you know about art?,” Corcoran (of Corcoran Gallery fame) asked.
“If you count a model’s perspective I know plenty,” Stephanie blasted back.
“Yeah, you’ve hung out with some true artists in your day.”
“Look missy – “

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“Ladies!”
(Nostradamus snuck one in edge-wise.)
“It’s unbelievable how poorly women treat each other don’t you think?” Marley asked Nostradamus.
“I wouldn’t call it my strong suit, but if you think women treat each other badly, how would you rate men killing each other in war?”
“Almost worse than being enslaved into a lifestyle you can’t afford,” Marley replied, with the full force of sarcasm you might expect from a Jamaican Islander.
“You have the nerve to speak up on that subject. You guys just hung around smoking marijuana, never contributing a thing to society,” Jack said.
“If your movies are your only contribution, I’m afraid my songs are a better one. At least I wrote songs that helped my people see life as it really is, fight against our oppressors and gain an inner peace. What did your movies ever do for anybody shy of pure escapism.”
“I had a few social comments to make. Just because I was a star, doesn’t mean I wasn’t concerned about humanity. You think you got a patent on that?”
“I think I’ve got a better stance going into this war than you do!”
“Look, I’ve got an extra life here, I’m a hedonist by nature. If these men are going to go to war anyway won’t they need all the help they can get.”
“From you Mr. Macho?” Jessica interjected.
“Sure, why not. They’ve never seen guns. Don’t you think our first play will be to scout and steal ammunition and guns so it’s an even playing field. Those liberal New Englanders have probably sat down at a Thanksgiving feast with those tribes by now. And we both know it was the tribes who helped them survive. If we first safely intermingle with the eastern tribes, then gain their confidence, we’ll be able to grab up a huge store of weapons and blow them back into the bay before word gets out on how huge this continent is!”
“Nice theory Jack. I hope it holds up better than your lovemaking at those bashes we used to attend,” Jessica said.
“Make love not war,” Corcoran said.
“I’m serious you pinko Neo-Haight-Asbury dropouts,” Jack scowled,

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“think of how much fun we can have if we can save this place for our new ancestors!”
Katherine B. seemed to scowl an approval. Her face was hard to analyze in her early years. Remember the quizzical but demanding “facials” she could throw at people in her early films? Those were tempered by playing a Shenandoah Valley “regular.”
“There is more than one way to skin a cat Mr. Jack,” Katherine B. said. “You may have something in keeping them off for now, but do you realize how quickly you’re going to have build treaties with all the tribes on the east coast!?”
“Yeah, but we have historians here. We can figure out the names of the leaders of all the tribes, what their dire needs are, and what to offer to make a peace work,” Stephanie pointed out.
“If the gods had placed ‘Handsome Lake,’ 5 or some type of apparition like these time travelers in 1622 instead of the 1900s, maybe there would have been a different peaceful conclusion. Can’t say the gods messed up because we had it made in the 20th Century. Some of us never realized the luxury of our situation. Others were abandoned, and felt so left-out, they retaliated by spoiling the party for themselves and lots of people around them. It is completely fair to expect all human beings to reach out and encourage people to know that their life matters, that they help the whole of humanity define itself, and that with simple understanding, condolence and love, humanity can experience a Renaissance as has never before been imagined. A Renaissance that is tripled in length by the emerging Americas, led into the 1700s by the ancestors of our ugly bones,” Tad said.
“Imagine a hawk like you coming around. Too bad Catherine isn’t here to witness the conversion of her followers,” Flying Owl said, with a knowing smile.
Actually, it was lucky for the circle that she was off rounding up the leaders of her war troops. While war was brewing on the horizon, the core of a wider alliance was sparked.
Nostradamus spoke:
“I am addressing the natives here. Please give me some leeway as I am here to speak on the side of peace. For all you know we could be lying about an invasion of white skins. We could be sending your men east so we can take over here.”

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“Don’t even start that way!” Flying Owl insisted.
“Look, we might be the only white skins that ever existed. Would you go to war knot knowing whether there is an opponent?”
“”Our people live by there dreams. You are the embodiment of a lot of dreams our people have been having. The women have been dreaming about this war for some time. We haven’t gone over the fire with it because we didn’t want to get the boiled up. If the war was headed our way, we were going to wait until the invaders came closer in our dreams before screaming our dreams and having scouts sent out.”
“Good point, smart idea, but, Flying Owl, if your dreams lead your life, who has dreamed of the conglomeration of more tribes into the Haudenosaunee?”
“I don’t know what your mean.”
“I know what he means,” Big Deer said. There have been insistent scenes in my brain about tribes to the south becoming a part of our family.”
“Good, then you know how important it is going to be to form larger and larger peace groups,” Nostradamus said. “I have strong feelings about the fate of mankind. I follow the stars, and meditate for days. You have been at peace in this area for longer than any warring tribes on the history of this planet. Your peace needs to be an example, not a historical one, of how to keep this planet habitable for humans. The best a war is going to do is hold back the Europeans a year or two if you lose the war.”
“We don’t lose wars,” Big Deer pointed out.
“Fine, let’s say you win. That gives you maybe ten year, 20 tops to keep the Europeans at bay. In that time if you don’t form an alliance with enough other tribes on this continent, they will come and destroy you.”
“But can we develop the negotiating skills of hundreds of thousands of people in order to create the type of arrangement seen in New Zealand in the 20th Century?” Tad asked.
“I don’t know what you are referring to, but large negotiating groups will help.” Nostradamus suggested.
“We need to warn the Haudenosaunee about the ways of the white men. The history as it is known 400 years from know shows that all the treaties signed with the natives of this land were either broken, ignored, renegotiated or warred out of

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existence. Almost all the land ends up in the hands of the whites. I’m not one to be a racist, and I am white, but the tribe of whites that end up here are the worst type of fascists,” Tad interjected.
{Author’s definition of fascist: 1) any government that encourages or licenses the profit of some from the toils of others.5}
“Very soon the peace and land-use of this continent will be inter linked among the natives and those who are coming. None of the whites, especially their leaders, will be easy to sway. Europe is already becoming industrialized in its own little way. You won’t be able to stop human resources form inventing technology. You will have to form a group big enough to make sure the land remains foremost. This war may only buy you two years. Failure will decide the fate of humans on earth. Failure means small but determined species will take over on the human remains,” Nostradamus warned.
“I am starting to believe in the dreams, and living by them,” Marley said. “If some have a dream of war, and others have a peaceful solution, maybe both can work.”
The two circles were lucky to have Nostradamus there to referee. Corcoran had enlisted the help of two young scout-looking lacrosse players to track Nostradamus, who had gone on a walkabout, as only a monk could: apparently he had run off with two teenage girls. Both were members of the Turtle Clan, and if it hadn’t been for the uproar of war, the search would have been completed much faster, and with possible deadly results.
The women of the Onodowaga tribe liked to torture men that ran off with their daughters. The torture was particularly effective as the men would be carefully castrated, in order to remain alive. After the castration, and full recovery of the victim, the women would play catch with his balls. They also might pound on them, or cut them up with axes or laugh at their puniness.
Instead, the disappearance was kept under raps by the women, and Corcoran was allowed to go looking for them with the two trusted young Snipe clan men. Darting Swallow and Charging Buck easily followed the movements of the threesome as the younger women were not adept at covering their tracks. Actually, that’s a bad way of putting it. They were very good at covering their tracks, just not so good by

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Haudenosaunee standards. Nostradamus had no idea why they should be covering their tracks, or lighting no fires.
“You are both so beautiful, it does not seem fair to have to decide,” Nostradamus said as they made a camp their first night out.
“You must decide. One of us is a virgin, so you can not have both of us. If neither of us was a virgin, there may have been room for compromise, but the law says that a virgin shall not be part of an orgy until she is rightfully married for a year. If you choose the one of us that is a virgin, you will have to marry her. If you choose the one who isn’t you won’t be compelled to marry her, but it may extend your visit to our tribe if you do. Choose wisely,” Gull Feather said.
“It’s not an easy decision, but-”
“Hold it right there,” Corcoran interrupted from a nearby bush. “You’re not going to jeopardize our stay here, fall down on your duty and break your monastic vows all at the same time are you!?”
“I was thinking about it, but I don’t see how sex ruins our stay here or means I’m not living up to my part of this cosmic time ride,” he retorted.
“The men will not take this lightly,” Darting Swallow warned.
“The men need not know. And if we’re smart, we won’t be the ones who add this drama to an already increasing flame,” Charging Buck suggested.
“Are you a coward?”
“No, and I’m smart enough to recognize an incident when I see one. Brother, this isn’t it.”
“Look,” Nostradamus pleaded, “I didn’t mean any harm by it. I’ll make it up to the group by leading a seminar in the art of negotiating, how about that?”
He was smart enough to catch on to the wave of hostility burning through Darting Swallow, but had no idea how nasty the results of a public airing of these offenses could be. It might be just a little teasing, a severe tickling, a semi-drowning, or full castration.
The Haudenosaunee men gladly created moments of sadistic merriment for their women, but amusement was not the purpose. Having avoided major wars with their corn customers to the west, and, although at peace with their immediate

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neighbors for centuries, still, the Haudenosaunee were always prepared to fight. This preparation included how to run a jail, how to torture prisoners and get them back to their camp so the enemy can see why it’s not smart to mess with them, and the art of running supplies.
It was assumed that men could scout, hunt, run and hide better than any neighboring tribesmen. What the Haudenosaunee had recently learned was how to market, transport and thrive with a corn crop that dominated the east coast of north “america.”
It wasn’t long before the free time earned by the peace under the great white tree evolved into a system of runners, salesmen, craftsmen and entertainers that was able to profit by their successes without taking advantage of anyone. Neither the workers nor the clients suffered in a system that promoted each clan becoming experts at their favorite enterprise, and trading those talents for the necessary tools for survival. There were no “lawyers” as all matters of importance were discussed with the whole clan. If matters became more important, a meeting of the whole tribe, or even the entire confederacy took place.
Such firm believers in dreams and apparitions had no problem convening the entire alliance when the white ghosts first showed up.
The sun gods were playing adolescent tricks by bringing the visitors to this situation with gadgets from their centuries. But such fun and games were only a way to drive home the point about the upcoming battles with the marauding Europeans.
“I have severe worries about going to war with people who have better weapons,” Darting Swallow said.
“I doubt they have better weapons. Such talk is just to get us more fired up to do a good job in the war, “ Charging Buck said.
“I’m not going to war. I’m going to stay here and learn to negotiate, and make the tribe strong, in case there is an onslaught.”
“If you do that, you will be condemning yourself to die,” Charging Buck said.
Corcoran: “No he won’t. The worst thing that would happen is having to move off this land, is that not so?”
“Yes it is,” Darting Swallow said.

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“If that’s the case, the only way you will be able to save Ganandauguay for your future generations is by learning how to negotiate,” Corcoran said.
“Saving the land of your dreams, even a town or two will not be easy,” Nostradamus said. “Let us help.”
“You seem real to me,” Darting Swallow said. “I will help any way I can.”
“You’re quick to jump to the wants of any new visitor, one who does not even have color!” Charging Buck rebuked. “These white skins must spend all day inside. They don’t know how to hunt, only a few have any talent for crafts, and the women are bossy. Especially Catherine the Great. Who does she think she is!”
“You’re the one who is threatening to join up with her devised clan of warriors!”
“Yes, but she should not be a warrior herself.”
“Why not?” Corcoran asked.
“It is not right. Women already have the rights in selecting the leaders. Only the women vote, only the men are leaders, especially in war,” Charging Buck said.
“Only the women vote?” Corcoran asked.
“Yes,” Sunshine said.
(Sunshine was the other young Turtle Clan woman who had run off with Nostradamus and Gull Feather.)
“It is a law my grandmother taught me about,” Gull Feather said. “The rule was set up because in a room full of men, deals can be cut. One man can stand in front of a crowd, and, while smiling, know that he has the votes because of deals set up with other men in the room. If that same man is trying to be chief, and only the women vote, no deals can be made. Have you ever tried to make some side arrangements in a room full of women Nostradamus?” “I’ve never been in a room full of women.”
“Well, take it from me, women instantly break up all treaties amongst men. Women are too untrusting of each other. Anyone making deals in groups bigger than one-at-a-time is instantly found out by all. Hence, when only women vote, as I said before, the best man is elected. Sure, specific men do the job, but we get to decide who will do the job.

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“That’s the best system I’ve ever heard of! It must work great,” Corcoran said.
“It has its moments,” Charging Bull conceded, “but I think women can and do form alliances with special deals and back scratchings.”
“You wouldn’t want my mother hearing you talk like that,” Sunshine said.
“Plus, if our alliances are formed it is always with the interests of electing the best man. If you don’t believe that, how did Running Bear rise above Big Deer?”
“She’s got you on that one,” Darting Swallow jabbed.
“If Running Bear is such a great man, why is he allowing this Catherine to lead him around by his balls?”
“If she wasn’t in control of his life, you wouldn’t have a war to go off to, Gull Feather suggested, as she stormed away from the group.
“What’s wrong?” Corcoran asked, catching up to her.
“I’m mad that these two so-called men are arguing, but neither can gain a firm footing for his side of the argument. I don’t want to see war, but Darting Swallow will fall flat on his face among his peers if he stays behind. Plus I’ve got to go pee.”
“Oh. Let me go with you”
“Why you gross pig.
“No, I mean so we can talk away from this crowd,” Corcoran assured her.
“I wouldn’t normally walk away from an argument with a cohort. It looks bad, but it may not be recorded since you’re a god.”
“I need help in convincing Nostradamus to live up to his word about the negotiation seminar. I think he’d rather run off with you or Sunshine.”
“Just before you got here we were telling him that one of us was a virgin and the other wasn’t. We also said that he would have to choose between us, since a virgin isn’t allowed in an orgy. Well, truth is, neither of us are virgins, but he needed to be grounded in our clan. We were encouraged to get him married into our group by our aunts and mothers,” Gull Feather explained.
“What the hell would you do that for, this guy’s a maniac.”
“We have no problem marrying a man to add his lines to our clan.”
“Don’t you people believe in free love, and being able to choose your partners?”
“Sure, but a marriage is only the beginning of a family. Our family is the whole

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clan. If we can secure the one god who appears like a man, who knows more about the universe than you other gods, and who wants to further peace, we will take our chances with his abilities as a father and lover.”
“But doesn’t that go against your policy of following your dreams?” “Not if having Nostradamus in our clan is somebody’s dream.”
With that, Gull Feather took a leak and the two headed back to the crowd. The six of them soon noticed that there were three women and three men. This human six-pack was located not one hundred yards from a spring-fed creek that sported crawdads and skimming water spiders. The water spiders were like skaters.
They would move over the top of the water, leaving a microscopic four-trailed wake behind them. They flowed easily over smooth pools of water and the running stream alike.
“I’ve never seen anything like those water spiders,” Corcoran said.
“It’s as if you people didn’t live in nature at all,” Darting Swallow said.
He sat down on a rock just next to her. He looked at her amazement about nature and thought she has a lot to learn for someone her age.
“How old are you Monica?”
“I’m 20, how old are you?”
“I’m sixteen, and I am bold enough to say that you need to learn a lot more about nature before you are worshipped in my house.”
“I’ve tried to explain that I am not a god. I am just a human being from a different time. We didn’t have to interact with nature in my time. We had all our necessities taken care of by money.”
“You can’t eat a wampum belt,” Darting Swallow insisted.
“No, but we had groups of people who specialized in making products, or fixing things that people couldn’t fix themselves.”
“Why would you have something you didn’t know how to fix?”
“Boy that’s a complicated one. You know Duane’s motorcycle?
“Yes.”
“Well everyone in this area had some type of vehicle to get from one place to another. If your job was to plant corn, you would use vehicles to help till, sew, harvest

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and transport your corn to the market where it is sold. If you are busy with your crops, you might not know how to fix a tractor.”
“If my job was to grow corn, I would have plenty of time to fix a tractor, or whatever else my clan had.”
“Never mind, why don’t you teach me about nature.”
“I have this strange problem that you might have seen before,” Darting Swallow said as he cleverly exposed his penis.
“Holy cow, that is a problem,” Corcoran thought as what appeared to be just the head of penis poked an inch or two away from his pubic hair.
“You see,” Darting Swallow continued, I am teased unmercifully by a crowd of men that believes my manhood to be less than perfect. When I was young no one noticed, but as I grew in height but not in size, if you know what I mean, my friends would laugh at me. It is how I became one of the strongest members of my clan. I had to fight my way through all the teasing.”
“That’s a shame, but if you don’t mind, could you put yourself back behind your leather?”
As he pulled the leather over his crotch, a tear flowed from Monica’s left eye. He was to the right side of her, so he didn’t see it.
“You are shy Monica, may I kiss you?”
“Not now. We have to get Nostradamus back to the meeting.”
As the two turned from the creek they were greeted by loud jostlings in the bushes. They realized they were going to have to wait before interrupting the groping that was going on nearby. They heard the noises, but never went to check on the other four.
Monica reached over and took Darting Swallow’s hand, kissed and licked his neck then bit his nipple, gently, then hard. Before you knew it they were immersed in each other. Darting Swallow loved the cold water, so he led her there. The creek was only a foot or so deep. He laid down naked in the water, then asked Monica to join him.
She was in the process of disrobing when he sprung from the water and tackled her. She was plenty pissed.

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“What the heck, this isn’t football.”
“No, we call it love play,” Darting Swallow corrected.
Still pissed, she relented to his earnest kissing, and soft fondling of her buttocks. He was nibbling her ear lobes from behind when she turned around and stuck her tongue down his throat. He was a little startled, but then the tongue-play became alternately furious and teasing.
She would lick his lips, and the bridge of his nose, then just hang her mouth there for him to play with. In turn, he was madly stroking her neck with his tongue, biting her chin and slowly rubbing his way up and down her sides.
Her clitoris twitched with the ache of need.
His penis started to swell with the blood of excitement.
She reached down and found nothing to cry about, as Darting Swallow had risen to a full seven inches. She hadn’t experienced anything like this before. Sure a man becomes enlarged in the stiffening, but this was like Chrysanthemum swelling into a Burning Bush — a two week old asparagus into a fully ripened cucumber!
Speaking of burning Bush. . . (should have thought of that earlier) Corcoran slid down to get a better angle on him. He groaned as she stroked and sucked. He sat in the water and pulled her on top of him. Then he rolled over, put Monica on her back facing upstream, and lapped her to orgasm with a current of white water flowing over his head, over her stomach, past her breast and by her shoulders.
Her hands slipped as they pushed on some rocks. Her left elbow buckled as she heaved her back in anticipation. Her pubic mound nearly crushed Darting Swallow’s nose in the motion. He used his chin to push her back into the water, and she screamed in both delight and surprise. She was astounded at his abilities, and they hadn’t even started yet. She was also surprised to see Nostradamus and Sunshine sneaking a peek. That didn’t slow her down, however, as she was used to trying to make love in a dorm room, where, instead of her own room, she had a tapestry-walled corner of a living room to try to entertain men in, whether her roommates were watching tv, or whatever. It was one of those “suite” set-ups, with two bedrooms and a very nice living room and kitchen, etc. There were supposed to be two people in each bedroom, but Monica had run into a power-bitch for a roommate, and was forced to eke

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out an existence in the common room.
After trying to be discreet for years, she wasn’t going to miss out on this fun just because some kinky monk (not the only one of those in history) and his new native neophyte nymph. In her days, she probably had guys snuck into her little corner, and making love without her roommates knowing it, but when you’re in a wild dream anyway, what’s there to lose?
She pulled Darting Swallow’s head tight to her crotch. That was the only prodding he needed. She let her head sink into the water. It was deep enough so that she had to hold her breath, but she wasn’t about to keep her hand and arm muscles tightened. She relaxed and let the water flow (even into her nostrils) occasionally lifting her head up to get air. Maybe that’s what Hunter/Weir meant by “I knew she’d have to come up soon for air.” Maybe not.
Either way, Monica was starting to let loose. She was the type who could continue receiving head even after five or six orgasms. After two or three, Darting Swallow stopped.
“No matter what I do you are having these little tiny orgasms, over and over. What do I have to do to get you all the way off?” Darting Swallow asked.
“I always just have the little ones. Lots of little ones. You can keep going if you like, but maybe you’re wanting to assert yourself, I mean insert yourself somewhere?” “I’m no longer in the mood. We have watchers, plus, I don’t understand how you can keep having those mini-orgasms without satisfying your soul.”
“Those little ones do satisfy my soul. I thought myself at an early age how to come as quickly as possible. Men don’t usually hang around long enough for women to achieve that monster orgasm, so, through masturbation, I thought myself how to achieve one quickly.”
“Yeah, but aren’t you denying yourself the pleasure of the big ones?” he said as he pulled his wet leather out of the water.
“Only when I’m with other people.”
“Well, you’re with a man who will take the time to give you the big one. The next time we love-play, you just tell me what you need, and we’ll do it. Hopefully without ass-hole voyeurs watching us,” he said, directing the comment to the

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approaching couple.
“Nice love-play, but rather brief,” Sunshine said.
“You’re awfully young to be fully involved in voyeurism,” Darting Swallow said.
“You’re awfully old to have the penis of a ten-year-old, Darting Swallow.”
“OK kids break it up,” Nostradamus interdicted. {How about that for a new usage of interdicted?}
The four of them then set off in search of Gull Feather and Charging Buck. Once they found them they kept teasing them until they finally stopped playing. Their play had Gull Feather’s calves resting on Charging Bulls shoulders. With her back on the ground, and butt pumping in-time with his, full penetration was achieved on each stroke.
“OK, enough is enough, she’s not going to be able to walk all the way back to the meeting if you don’t quit,” Sunshine suggested.
Nostradamus laughed.
And off they trekked, back toward Ganandauguay.
That is how Nostradamus was able to rejoin the group, add to circle number two, and, with circle number three, join up with circle number one. The three came together just in time to hear Larsen explaining:
Larsen: It’s going to take a lot to hold off the Europeans diplomatically. I’m not sure we can do it, but, as has been suggested, the formation of an ever-increasing alliance is essential.
Nostradamus couldn’t help but smile at the synchronicity of thought.
Woolf: The only way is through war. They will keep coming until they have what they want. It may be simple to keep the Puritans at bay, but how are you going to reestablish a foothold in the southern part of the hemisphere with the Spanish already firmly entrenched without a war?
Larsen: By forming a bigger alliance of every nation that hasn’t been overtaken, and creating an equitable system.
Tolkien: Are you out of your mind? People came and took what they wanted, no matter how bad the wars were.
Allman: The Haudenosaunee deserve to be saved. I know how it turns out. The

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system found a way to snuff us out because they couldn’t find a way to profit on us. The idea of communes with great gobs of people not participating in the economy, living off the land, and most importantly not enslaving themselves to the almighty dollar, did not appeal to the powers that be. They managed to snub every popular movement that even questioned authority.
Larsen: You’re not kidding. By the time the 1990s rolled around, once having belonged to groups as positive as Amnesty International or the American Civil Liberties Union would lock you out of the job market in entire cities!
Allman: Well, I guess it was around ‘70 when I realized the fun had a limited lifespan. Very few of the hangouts ever worked out for us, but we sure had fun. If you have a band or one or two people who can sustain a house financially, then the rest of the hang-arounds can develop into the humans they want to be without the time constraints of regular work. Most jobs were so dead-end, at least when I was around, that people would much rather be poor and hanging out on a farm than enslave themselves. Working for the profit-driven companies can be dangerous for your health: especially work that has nothing to do with your god-given skills and desires.
Woolf: Good luck getting rid of the profit motive.
Larsen: There is no profit motive here. All we’d have to do is instill the Haudenosaunee beliefs in nature on the arriving Europeans.
Tad: An effective barter system would still allow people to thrive, but it would also close the gap between the richest and the poorest. Everyone could enjoy the beautiful country this area is. What ends up happening here is a huge group of underclass are enslaved into poverty and violence, another big hunk has to work so hard, they have no time to have fun, while those who profit off of the labor of others are stuck building walls around their estates for fear the have-nots will attack the haves. Somehow human beings got so far away from loving each other and helping each other out that the gap threatened to implode the country. It was a genocidal war of attrition, in which, unlike most civil wars, the rich blew away the poor with the middle classes help. Usually the middle class tries to get the poor to kill the rich, so they can become the rich. In the US in 1995, anyone who didn’t pass corporate muster was relegated to a living of 80-hour work weeks or impoverishment.
Big Deer: No man needs to hunt forever. How could it be that all your waking hours were spent in pursuits other than following your dreams?

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Tad: Following your dreams was acceptable if you were already rich, or if you didn’t mind living like an animal.
Flying Owl: But we are animals, and everyone is rich, so I don’t understand you.
Tad: Look, we had a money system that caused people to owe large obligations. To meet those obligations they worked most of their waking hours. Even mothers with children left their homes and worked away from their families!”
Big Deer: You are exaggerating I am sure,
Larsen: No he’s not. We had almost no free time.
Big Deer: No wonder you are so quick to go to war. For many men going to war would be the only way out of such an intolerable situation.
Tad: Bingo.
Big Deer: This conversation is important, but I suggest we continue once Running Bear shows up.

The day was starting out with a bang. Just as it was breaking up, more young men were lured to the scene, as the crowd became large enough to attract interest on its own. Just as natives were starting to listen more, a few of the invitees were getting bored, and pealed off for exploratory hikes.
Jessica and Stephanie were eyeing each other, and asked a few natives where the best part of the lake was for swimming.
“The lake is pretty everywhere but the south end. That is a two-hour hike, so I don’t see how you’d end up there. “I like the other side of the lake at “First Bend.”
The native was referring to what was later called Tichner’s point. It was about a mile swim across the lake and maybe five miles north of their present location. The ladies decided head down to the shore and take it from there.
A soft southern wind came up. Three bass circled a few yards into the water. Jessica and Stephanie waded in.

 

 

 

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  • Before You Speak

    Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates. At the first gate, ask yourself, ‘Is it true?’ At the second ask, ‘Is it necessary?’ At the third gate ask ‘Is it kind? Rumi  Translated by Coleman Barks

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“The Dinner Party,” a novella in 11 chapters plus endnotes, copyright, Doug Stuber, 1992.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The Dinner Party Chapter 4

Dinner Party Chapter 4 Stuber 4.1

The meeting of the Onodowaga is coming together around a fire the next day. The tribe has four clans: Snipe, Turtle, Bear and Wolf. Running Bear is from the Turtle clan, but he is also the chief of The Onodowaga as a whole. 2 Their form of democracy was a demanding one. If anyone in the clans disagreed with a decision,
it was argued over and amended until a unanimous vote could be made. The problem of the visitors had caused too much panic to let sit until a normal meeting, so the corn festival became an impromptu meeting. First came a Thanksgiving prayer. Then:
R.B.: “This meeting of the Onodowaga is in order. The stress we are all feeling, and the nasty rumors and fear amongst our people has to come to an end. It is obvious that we are being visited by people from the future. This seems absurd, but these people are not gods. They also want to protect us from what must be a bad fate. But do we believe them? I am here to gain our position on this matter. Do we trust these people with magic, or do we banish them?”
Running Bear’s political prowess is in full force, as he has his tribesmen believing that there was still an option. Deep inside, he knew he would convince his clan, and the rest, that taking the advice of the outsiders is the best.
“We must remember that outside visitors can have a lasting positive influence on our tribe. Did not Ayonwatha take the advice of the Peacemaker, a Huron, of all things? Without that trust in an outsider, our alliance of nations would not exist.”
Running Bear was fully aware that the method of the Peacemaker was simple: Condolence.
When Ayonwatha had no friends, the peacemaker offered him comfort. From then on, they were an unstoppable team in the pursuit of peace. Sure the peace meant that the Hurons would no longer fear the wrath of Mohawks, there was far more to be gained by the Hurons at first.
But the peace that lasted for centuries amongst the Haudenosaunee ended up
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the greatest achievement any civilization could strive for. The dilemma for Running Bear was that the group of visitors was divided about how to handle the inevitable invasion of Europeans. He sided with Catherine.
Most of his tribe sided with the peaceful alternatives. It had been generations since a full scale war was planned. The clans had neither the experience nor gumption to defy the laws that had been in force so long.
Sooner or later, Running Bear knew it would become an issue of gender. He knew the kettle boiled under many men in the tribe. He also knew the women had long since dominated the economy with corn production, and that to threaten their crops with war could lead to his removal as chief.
Typical Onodowaga meetings had issues tossed around until a decision was made, or the issue put aside until more information was learned about the subject. (Remind anyone of the lengthy decision-making process we’ve got going in the 1990s?) This way no major changes were going to take place overnight, unless everyone agreed on them. The following quotes are ideas that flew “over the fire” at Running Bear’s meeting. Names are not attached to these ideas, genders are. (M=male, F= female.)
F: “We need to hear all that these white-skins are saying, no one knows everything, we just hear rumors.”
F: “I have heard that these people have strange powers and possess items that
Can not be explained.”
M: “We are talking about details, when the real issue here is one of war. Half the white-skins say we need to stay here and keep to our traditions, and show the invaders that peace is the way. The other half say that if we do that we will be destined to give up our land, and our way of life will be forgotten.”
M: “If so, I say war is not so bad an option.”
F: “I say you are fanning a flame that has been dead a long time in this region.
If you men start a war in which all the tribes fight, the women will revolt. You will have no more sleeping privileges until you stop this crazy talk. Isn’t that right women?”
Most women murmur in agreement.
M: “I say we learn more from the white skins. I say we invite them to a
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meeting!”
F: “Are you crazy? If they know our secrets, they will gain too much power over us.”
M: “You have made my point for me. They can gain power over us. First we need to control these visitors, then, if more of them arrive, we need to go to war before they own us.”
F: “I think if we listen to the whites who are here to warn us, we can agree that they are here to help. Even the ones who suggest war are probably doing so because they realize our way of life is worth saving. If they are from the future, maybe they know outcomes that we do not want to face.”
F: “Such talk from a woman, it sounds like you favor war.”
F: ” Absolutely not, I just think we should hear them out.”
M: “If we do hear them out, then we will still say our Thanksgiving prayer in private. We shall not divulge any of our secrets. These people seem to have very little knowledge or care for the natural world. It may be our strongest point, that we
worship natural gods, they should never hear our prayers. We will do it at a different meeting.”
Running Bear: “I think that is the best policy. We shall have another meeting of the clans tomorrow. I am sorry for the inconvenience, but I invite my fellow clans to send runners back to their villages. We shall have a day of fun here at the lake, and continue this meeting, with the whites in attendance tomorrow. That means we need to have as many people here as possible. The more people who witness their powers and hear their beliefs, the better the vote will be. Until then I suggest that we have sports on the fields, canoes on the lake, demonstrations of water skills, and, of course, love making.”
This last comment gets a scowl from Flying Owl, a woman who then suggested no sleeping privileges, which got laugh from the men. With the meeting
about to change back into a corn festival, the Thanksgiving prayer was repeated.
In the prayer, thanks is given to: human beings, earth, water and plants. As well as the three sisters (corn, beans, squash) animals, trees, winds, birds, thunder, the moon, the sun, the stars, the “Four Beings” (sky dwellers who guide the natives) and the creator. The tribes put their faith in these things, and many others.
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After each section of the prayer, they feel at one with the item being honored, and as a mind of one among themselves. The key to their beliefs is that all things yearn to be accepted for what they contribute to life. From the ant all the way to the creator, this desire to fit in must be fulfilled by others who show reverence and offer condolence.
If we are all tuned in, the author might be able to whip up an entire Thanksgiving prayer.3 But it would only be an estimate, it would come from the wrong perspective, and would not have the guidance that years of oral history have offered the Onodowaga.
Running Bear took a quick scan across the fields and saw that the games had begun. The visitors, seeing the breakup of the meeting, had gathered in a field to show the natives how their magic worked. Here’s what the visitors had come with:
Corcoran (having been yanked from her dorm room at Hollins College) had on sandals, cutoff dungaree shorts, a red, yellow, green and blue tie-dye shirt, a pair of John Lennon spectacles and a backpack. In the backpack were a lighter, cigarettes, a notebook, two textbooks, two tampons and a rubber-band style hair tie. The textbooks were on biology and logic.
Garcia (having disappeared just after that Galax jam session) had on jeans, Jack Purcell sneakers, a T-shirt commemorating some blues festival in San Francisco, wire-rim glasses, and was amazingly clean shaven. He carried an acoustic guitar in a case that also included extra strings, a few picks and a bag of pot. He had a zippo lighter in his front left pocket.
Marley was in shorts a red and yellow shirt with Johnny Nash’s picture on it and sandals. He disappeared from a 1974 tour of America, and had with him a suitcase full of clothes, trinkets and a Kodak Signet camera from the 1950s.
Katherine B. was in her Steeles Tavern, Virginia garden in 1991 when she disappeared. She was wearing keds sneakers, a pair of faded jeans, a white T-Shirt with a blurb for Joe Jackson’s Love & Lust tour on it. She also toted a bag of pot, and had a hand shovel and a plastic watering jug, as she had been tending her flower garden when dispatched to the dinner party.
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Rodgers and Jack were in bars on different sides of North America when they got yanked. Both are in normal 1987 garb. Rodgers showed up with a beer in his hand (long gone) and Jack had a bottle of Jack Daniels, half gone.
Tolkien was in his library, and arrived with “Falconer ” a novel by John Cheever.
Martin was having sex with her roommate and a sophomore from Washington and Lee University when she “flew” out of her room. She arrived naked and had been wearing borrowed native clothes ever since.
Woolf had been painting a seascape, so she arrived with brushes, an easel, a canvas, a bottle of gin and a pet Westie. She was wearing a skirt, blue blouse, a hat. Her yapping little dog was a pest, but her lively conversation already had the Onodowaga women crowding around her at times.
Nostradamus was in monk’s clothing, including a goofy little hat that looked a lot like the thing the guy from the Spin Doctors wears, only made of a grungy brown wool with raw wool earmuffs and leather thongs for a strap. He carried his carefully protected journals.
Catherine the Great had on an informal dress with tight bodice. She too came from a drinking party and was loaded with a bottle of Vodka.
Kandinsky wore drab clothes, leather work boots that were almost a size too small. He had a pocket watch in his front right vest pocket, two canvasses and six bright colors of paint.
Tad carried a boom box that had batteries that were fading fast. The box had a compact disc of “Breakfast in America” by Supertramp loaded in it. He was wearing blue shorts, a Buffalo Sabres replica sweater with the name Mogilny on the back, and the number 89 all over it. He wore wire-rim glasses. He carried with him an oxygen supply that was hooked up, via Heimlich Micro-Trachea directly to his lungs when he first arrived. But a lucky combination of his oxygen supply running out, and his no longer needing it hit at the same time. The natives were still mighty interested in his machine.
Stephanie and Jessica were backstage at an R.E.M. concert being held in a gym at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia in 1988 when they were whisked away. Stephanie had on tight pants and a skimpy shirt. She had a tattoo of a rose and a tiger-lily on the inside of her right ankle. Jessica had on jeans and a tied
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button down shirt, kind of like a young Patsy Cline might wear back in Winchester, Virginia when she was be-bopping around. They both had a ton of make-up on, and in purses.
Larsen had on a brown shirt, a vest and wire-rim glasses to go with the manual typewriter, full box of typing paper and twelve pages of prose bundled under her arm. She was in the field to demonstrate the contraption. Now that everyone was speaking the same language, it was her intention to teach people how to read and write it.
Finally, Duane Allman had been picked off while riding a Harley Davidson, full blast down a highway in Georgia. The motorcycle was the talk of the town, and Duane had plenty of gas in his tank, so a demonstration was still in the cards. He had arrived with the hollow body Gibson strapped over his back `a la Johnny Cash.
Kandinsky started by explaining that it seemed a group of artists, musicians and writers had been gathered to protect the natives from the coming onslaught of Europeans.
Woolf: I don’t know how long we have before the French show up here, but a united front in dealing with them should be our goal.
Tolkien: I agree with Jeanne, we have to find a way to teach them the language, translate their words into written form and preserve their culture.
Larsen: It’s a long project. Maybe we should just have a field day with our friends for now.
Nostradamus: I couldn’t agree more.
Two young women walked up to him, looking inquiringly at his hat. The threesome snuck off together.
Allman, bored by the whole thing, fired up his bike.
Running Bear: Could you explain this thing?
Allman: It’s a motorcycle. You want a ride?
Running Bear didn’t have to think long about that one. His bravery was being tested, so he agreed. Allman put him on the back, and they went for a slow cruise around the field. As they were riding, Running Bear had an inquiry.
R.B.: What makes this thing move?
“ Gasoline and this engine,” Allman said as they made a corner, narrowly
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missed a tree and stopped at the top of a rise. The crowd watched attentively as Allman quickly put his hand on the muffler and took it off.
Allman: The exhaust makes the pipes hot see?
R.B.: I feel the hotness, but I still don’t understand how it works.
Allman: Well, maybe it is beyond my teaching, but it is pretty good proof that we are from the future isn’t it?
R.B.: Maybe you are from a star? Maybe you are from the Underworld. I don’t know, but we have to make my people comfortable with your presence, or they will vote to banish you.
Allman: I don’t care about the vote. It’s good to be alive.
R.B.: You would not survive if we banished you, but I am on your side.
The two returned to the crowd where Corcoran was trying to explain her lighter. She lit up a cigarette, and two young Onondowagans come to her with a pipe in their hands.
Corcoran: Here, let me light that for you.
She lights up a huge bowl of hemp, and the boys take a drag and pass the pipe around.
The crowd is amazed at a simple Bic disposable.
R.B.: There is nothing strange in what these people bring. They are from the future. They claim to be from Earth, and I say we believe them.
Bobbing Tail: You believe them because you were making love with one of them last night.
R.B.: What do you mean crazy lady?
B.T.: You were playing games with that one. (She points to Catherine the Great.)
R.B.: That is crazy, where did you hear that nonsense.
B.T.: Everyone but you seems to be spreading it around. You were missing at the same time she was missing.
R.B.: I was preparing the boys for the lacrosse match against the Cayugas
next week. We had to go over terrain, and the quick routes through the woods to their village. Isn’t that right?
Two or three young men chirp up to lie for him.
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Catherine the Great: Even if we were love-making, what difference does it make to you?
B.T.: I am his wife, this is his daughter. If you don’t confess to it right now, I will seek refuge in my cousin’s house.
R.B.: There is nothing to confess. This lady from the future is trying to stir things up.
C. the G.: He’s right, there is nothing to confess. I was swimming last night. There was a rustling in the bushes as I swam, but I think it was a deer.
B.T.: I’ll bet it was my husband watching you. Were you naked?
C. the G.: Of course.
B.T.: You will have to come to my house and undergo a test to see if I believe you.
As Running Bear, Bobbing Tail and Catherine the Great headed for the village, Fawn was left with Garcia, who was explaining his guitar.
Garcia: This is an instrument played by many people in my century. We even have ways of making the noise very loud so thousands of people can listen to us at the same time. People come to our concerts and tape the songs so they can listen to them over and over again.
Tad: Here’s an example of recorded music from our century.
He cranks on the Supertramp, and the less frightened natives come up to listen to it.
A few yards away, Stephanie and Jessica are explaining cosmetics.
Others have liquor bottles to look at, and clothing to go through.
Meanwhile, the troika has arrived at Bobbing Tail’s ganohsot.
Bobbing Tail: You will sit facing each other please, as I question you both.
Running Bear is not pleased with the idea. He grunts, but sits down about eight feet away from Catherine, not quite facing her directly.
There are two masks hanging from the inside wall of the ganohsot. They are scary looking to Catherine, but are the masks of joy and rain to the Onondowagas. They are made of wood and stained with red and black, with rocks for eyes and ears. There are other trinkets in the room, including two wampum belts, a condolence

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cane4 and a piece of smoothed wood that reminds Catherine of a phallus she once knew.
Bobbing Tail: So, your name is Catherine. Were you making love with my husband last night?
C. the G.: No.
B.T.: Running Bear, were you disgracing your position as husband and tribal leader by making love with this woman without my consent?
R.B.: No.
Catherine really gets to thinking now. What the hell did Bobbing tail mean by “without my consent.” Did she mean that with her consent it would have been all right? Was this something the whole tribe agreed on, or was it between them?
B.T.: Take your clothes off.
R.B.: I know what you are up to Bobbing Tail. In know the test you women put us through in these situations, and I strongly disapprove.
B.T.: You will submit to the test, or lose your wife, daughter and power as chief.
R.B.: Fine.
Running Bear takes his leather off and reveals a flaccid penis. He then sits down with his legs crossed, pretty much hiding his penis from view.
B.T.: Now you do the same Catherine.
C. the G.: You are out of your mind. I will not submit myself to this kind of ridicule.
B.T.: You will do it, or I will make sure you are banished. No one will listen to your ideas, you will be expelled, and by January, you will die I am sure.
C. the G.: Boy oh boy this is tough stuff.
She’s thinking this may go beyond any crazy night she’s ever had, when Bobbing Tail instructs her to remain standing.
B.T.: You will walk back in forth in front of my husband. I will watch your eyes and his. If anything happens to arouse his penis, I will suspect you both.
C. the G.: You know, as a woman that is unfair. No man can stand to be teased by a naked women without getting hard.
Stuber 4.10

B.T.: That may be true where you come form, but our men better learn how
to keep a soft penis at a young age. They also know how to keep a hard penis, but I’m sure you’ve already found that out!
C. the G.: I’m being exploited here, and I don’t like it.
R.B.: Do as she says or all of your friends will end up as dead as you.
C. the G.: They aren’t my friends.
B.T.: Shut up and start walking.
Catherine prances around on tip toes. Her breasts jiggle up and down, and she starts to get hard nipples. This does not please Bobbing Tail in the slightest.
B.T.: This is a test to see if my husband responds to your sex, but if you start to get horny on me, I will assume that you are after him!
C. the G.: The cool breeze has made me this way. The only test of horniness is whether my lips get wet, and you know it.
B.T.: We’ll see about that.
Bobbing tail walks over to Catherine and sticks a finger in her vagina. She smells it.
C. the G.: Why you gross heathen.
B.T.: This is the only way to test. So far you have passed. Now keep walking. Only tease him more. Get nearer to him, hang your tits in his face, move your ass around.
C. the G.: Again, I must protest. Do you think I am one of those prostitutes!
R.B.: Just do as she says. This will be over soon, and then we can make our case for war to save our people.
B.T.: You two are already in cahoots! I can not accept your philosophical convergence, even if there is no proof of sex between you. I am going to stay with my cousins until the tribe decides which way it is voting on the subject of war. If you and this white god have a new marriage, and the war wins out, you are out of my life as a lover, do you understand that Running Bear?
R.B.: What I understand is that the women of the tribe have blackmailed you into making the war subject also the last subject of conflict between us personally. I

Stuber 4.11

am determined to make the best decision for everyone, if that means we are never together again, then so be it. If we decide on peace and hiding from the white onslaught, I assume we have passed your test and that you and I will remain together.
B.T.: I am too upset to think about all of this. I still suspect you two because you were both gone for so long. If this white skinned lady is truly only a human from the future, then why would she risk being off alone in unknown territory? We may stay together if the tribe decides on peace, we will have to see. Go out and play husband.
C. the G.: You don’t mind if I get dressed do you?
B.T.: I hate your tone. I was going to sit and talk with you. If you can be at peace I still will, so get dressed and we will talk.
Running Bear leaves the tent and heads toward a pick-up game of Lacrosse. Catherine, stepping into silk panties, a thick cotton skirt, a long sleeved shirt and boots, decides to stick around to hear this native out.
BT: The last time my husband was fooling around, he never admitted it, but the tramp he was around with ran off and became the scapegoat of another tribe just so she could be warm in the winter.
C. the G.: I am nobody’s scapegoat. You may not think I am up to scouting a region on my own, but that is exactly what I was doing the other night. I ruled the mightiest nation on earth, walking around these lakes is a walk in the park for me, at night or during the day.
BT.: Why are you so enamored with war?
C. the G.: I am not enamored by it. I know how to win battles, I know how to fight because our country often has struggles. But I would much rather enjoy the conveniences of peace than the horror of war. If a war is necessary to save your people, why would you oppose it?
BT: You white-skins are split about whether war is needed. If you are from the future and cannot agree on what is the best direction, how are we supposed to trust decisions made with your advice?

Stuber 4.12

C. the G.: Make the decisions yourselves. We know that Europeans will come here and take over your land. The other people, who come from times much farther into the future than myself have seen what this country will become once land is owned and people become greedy profiteers. If your way of life is worth a war to save, I say fight.
BT: But some say even if we fight we will lose!
C. the G.: Then I say find a way to negotiate on the white man’s terms. But you have to realize that the white ways are my ways, and I know they will come to dominate this area no matter what you do.
BT: So why fight?
C. the G.: Because you don’t want to give up your way of life like cowards do you?
BT: Cowards we are not. I can see that this argument will be difficult to resolve.
(Before that spirit hits, the backbiting, tongue-lashing female war games begin.)
C. the G.: I understand you have loose rules about letting your husbands make love with other women.
BT: Whoever told you that was full of malicious lies. If we have lovers they are pre-approved. We talk about the merits of wife-swapping with all the parties involved. The secret agreements made, and nightly wanderings may be numerous, but they are not done in the rude way you subscribe to. Running Bear has never been unfaithful to his dreams, but he has never ran after a dream without consulting his family. You have managed to cause great problems for my family, my tribe, and you might lead five peaceful nations to a war against people we don’t even know.
C. the G.: Well, and what have you done to further the causes you believe in?
BT: I’ve made sure my husband didn’t make a fool of himself with the tribe.
With a strong leader we’ve been able to resolve differences with our neighbors, keep strong a system that involves everyone in the fate of the tribe and make a fun life for our children. One free of war!
Stuber 4.13

C. the G.: Well, I’m leaving. Your husband may follow my lead, or make up his own mind, but your envy of our friendship will not help the situation any.
BT: No one need know about your wanton love of my husband. I do not approve of it, but if you continue to display these attacks on my family for all to see, you will pay.
C. the G.: Good-bye Running Bear. Good luck dealing with your wife.
Catherine bent over and showed an ample buttocks as she lifted the leather away from their door.
BT: You have a terrible eye for beauty. If you are attracted to that, you must think me quite ugly!
RB: You know I did nothing to disgrace you or our tribe. The whole chaos created by the white gods arrival has caused wild dreams for everyone.
BT: Don’t fall back on that old prop. If you went off with her, or if you didn’t, it is obvious she is in love with you. She desperately wants to lead you off into war.
RB: Please leave me alone to deal with this.
BT: OK, but you know the talk is already around the Turtle clan, the Heron clan has plenty of connections to ours, and more than one set of ears. That means everything you have done the last two days is now known by all Haudenosaunee that matter. Ponder that before you fire-up the youngsters for war!
With that Bobbing Tail leaves the ganohsot and spots a gathering of women around a fire about 50 yards form the lake. Actually, the women are gathered around talking to peacenik whites about things other than war.
Woolf: They tell me you are an artist.
Kandinsky: Yes I painted, but went a lifetime barely noticed in my own country.
Woolf: Shall we show these folks how you painted? You could paint over the canvass I was working on.
Kandinsky: No, I think a much bigger project than art is teaching about the times we came from. I have no idea what is was like for you in England. Why don’t you let us in on it.
Woolf: I was a spoiled brat really. Daddy used to bring by a lot of famous writers, who mostly encouraged me to become one of them. I’m not sure I
Stuber 4.14

succeeded, but having Tennyson around certainly made a fun summer of it.
Two women start to snicker and yawn. The party looks like it’s about to break up when Bobbing Tail comes over to the fire to a murmur of some magnitude.
BT: What are you going on about this time Virginia?
Woolf: I was talking to Wassily about art and negotiations.
BT: Well, I just had a negotiation, and it looks like I’ll be staying with my cousins in the Heron clan for a while.
Woolf: What the heck is going on.
A general agreement amongst the women hanging around encourages Bobbing Tail to spill the beans.
BT: I tested Catherine the “great” to see if she was lusting after my husband.
A howl of laughter rises up from the group.
Woolf: Why are they laughing.
BT: Probably because they know that the test is not really a test, but a way of humiliating the two adulterers. I stuck my finger into Catherine while Running Bear watched. He knew what was going to happen. It could have been worse, but I did not dissuade Catherine from continuing her adamant war ranting.
Kandinsky: I don’t understand, was there some type political maneuvering involved in this love-making?
Woolf: Apparently!
BT: If she has her way, the Haudenosaunee will be stuck in a war against the white people who have landed east of here.
Now the crowd is more interested.
Kandinsky: We will need your help to attract people to peace. I will talk to the other artists that are here. Perhaps we can come with a celebration that will take their minds away from war.
BT: Make sure you get Nostradamus involved. My clan is particularly swayed by his oration.
Woolf: I don’t think a diversion is as important as the decision at hand.
Kandinsky: But we will draw a bigger crowd if we offer some music.
BT: maybe so, but I insist we have arguments about his.
Woolf: Arguments are for the day. Maybe Kandinsky is right, maybe tonight
Stuber 4.15

we should just party.
Jessica: I agree.
Stephanie: Hey Wassily, are we up for some more art lessons?
Kandinsky: I presume so.
BT: You are no different than us. I can see it by the way you spend your free time. I will never understand how you goofy white humans from the future can sway the best men of our tribe. If you’re willing to help us tomorrow, then tonight we party.
She leads Woolf, Kandinsky, Jessica and Stephanie away from the fire.
BT: Are we set for the night?
Jessica: I don’t understand what do you mean.
BT: I left my husband to brood at our ganohsot, it is a wonderful night. Are we set as a group to find a place to have our party?
Woolf: Sure, but I’m with Jessica, I don’t quite understand what you mean.
BT: Well, Kandinsky here seems to have an eye for Stephanie, that leaves the three of us to roll around with each other, unless you want me to introduce you to some single men in the clan.
Woolf: We’re fine as a threesome by me.
Jessica: I’m not so sure about any of this.
BT: Let me take us to a patch of early hemp. We will sit around looking at the stars, smoking the mystic herb and see what happens.
Jessica: You’re a compelling hostess.
The five headed away from a semi-rambunctious crowd of women, some men and sparks being thermalled into the night air.

 

 

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  • Before You Speak

    Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates. At the first gate, ask yourself, ‘Is it true?’ At the second ask, ‘Is it necessary?’ At the third gate ask ‘Is it kind? Rumi  Translated by Coleman Barks

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“The Dinner Party,” a novella in 11 chapters plus endnotes, copyright, Doug Stuber, 1992.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The Dinner Party, a Novella in 11 Chapters, with Endnotes, Chapter One

Chapter One

Dinner Party

Monica Corcoran, Jerry Garcia, Bob Marley and Katherine B. were sitting next to James Rodgers, Jack, J.R.R. Tolkien and Ashley Martin at a dinner party. They had been invited by Corcoran, to sit in a ganohses (longhouse) halfway down the east side of Canandaigua Lake. The year was 1622. Blue Lake stories pervaded as Virginia Woolf walked in with a subdued Nostradamus, Catherine the Great and Wasily Kandinsky. Tad Stuber and “Stephanie” lounged in with Jessica, Jeanne Larsen and Duane Allman.
The pow-wow was set to see who could do the most to stop Europeans from coming across the ganyodeowaneh. Or, at least insert the native culture deep within the collective psyche of the oncoming tribes of explorers. News of men from the ocean arrived before this party. Scouts on the eastern edge of the Haudenosaunee nations had already heard of the Puritans landing in a place they named Plymouth.
Corcoran was amazed that no natives were around to greet them. She decided to explain a little more about her intentions for the dinner party.
“I can’t believe this party is happening, but you should listen up. My friend and I decided to have this party in order to help the natives fend off the Europeans. We’re here to save this place for them,” she said.
A few invitees started to grumble. James, Ashley and Tad in particular were anxious about their surroundings.
“I was just sitting around my dorm room one day when this crazy bass player asked if we had ever played the game ‘dinner party’ before. I told him I never heard of it. Anyway, the game is simple: we invited some of our favorite people here so we could get to know them. The thing is, we got to invite anyone from history that we wanted to.”
“So why on earth did you invite me?” Stephanie asked.
“I don’t know. I thought you were one of his better choices actually,” Corcoran responded.
“Well, at least we came with the stuff we had on us. I think the whole thing is
bullshit. I’m going outside to play, anyone interested,” Jack said as he waived a lemon-sized sack of bean-bag beans in the air.
A few followed him our the door. Jack rested the hacky-sack on his forehead then started a round with Jessica, Katherine B., Kandinsky and Allman.
Amidst errant volleys, Jack suggested a conspiracy. “Pirates, only equipped with cigarette boats and huge chains. Just turn them away.”
“A peaceful thought but it won’t work,” Katherine B. interjected.
“Maybe a war would keep them away,” Tad said. “We could borrow some toys from the Pentagon and keep this place safe forever.”
“Unless you’re better at time jumping than I am, I don’t think that will work out,” Allman said. “Who are you anyway?”
“Tad’s the name, and I say that the only way to conserve this space is to bomb the heck out of the invaders. The technology will blow them back into the dark ages.”
Bob Marley overhears from behind a birch branch in the house. He’s unimpressed. “Look, it’s not the people, it’s the greed, and the technology itself that stink!”
“We need to make sure the continent remains agrarian,” Martin said, peering over smashed beans and corn meal.
(Not knowing Martin, the author assumes she knows what she’s talking about. But she said it, so that’s that.)
The ganohses they have landed in is one set up for special meetings. Highly decorated mats make sitting on the ground a little more comfortable for the 20th century visitors. Nostradamus sat in a corner meditating. No mat needed.
Now Duane Allman was not a good hacky player. The poor boy tried, and after being teased by Kandinsky, quit. Wassily quit too, opting to take Stephanie and Jessica behind the bushes for an artist/model strategy session. Because he was so used to painting abstracts, Kandinsky had to remember how to instruct the Russian methods of posing before teaching it. He hadn’t used a model in years, but their figures were compelling. He only had a few colors and two canvasses, so he knew each stroke would have to count. The session didn’t last long.
Catherine the Great, now free to ponder the fate of America, suggested: “A new
poverty. That’s what this continent needs. Mindless serfs with pure loyalty to our ideals. The natural resources should only be in the hands of those who know how to use them.”
“How obvious,” Marley quipped.
“There has to be a way to get to the heart of the problem. We need to meet with these people and get them motivated as soon as possible,” C. the G. suggests.
“Motivated to do what?” Woolf asked.
“To fight to save their homeland!”
“It doesn’t matter what they do. The enslaving tactics of the Europeans will either wipe them out, or use them like they used the Africans. I don’t think our little band of do-gooders is going to be able to win a war against all of Europe,” Marley said.
Tad, overhearing all this added: “Look, around here I think it was the French who came in first. We wouldn’t have to hold off all of Europe.”
Marley, not wanting to stay involved in war talk, meandered over to Allman. He recognized Duane from the album cover of “Live at Fillmore East”. It was one of the albums Marley cherished.
“Aren’t you Duane Allman?”
“Sure am.”
“What do you think about all of this?”
“I can’t believe I’m in the middle of some ancient times. Why did I show up with my motorcycle and electric guitar, when they are useless?”
“Don’t know, but I’d trade ten cups of this tea for just one cup of coffee,” Marley said, trying to tip off his identity.
“‘One Cup of Coffee,’ wasn’t that an obscure Bob Marley side from the early sixties?”
“Guess so. Who do you think you’re talking to?”
“Oh my God! I’m sorry man, I didn’t recognize you. Your hair should have given it away,” Allman said.
“This is great, we can have a serious jam.”
“I saw a teenager with a guitar walking around too,” Allman said. “He’s got an old Martin, a real beauty. Maybe we should get together.”
“Sounds good to me, let’s go find the guy with the guitar,” Marley said, smiling.
While the two musicians went in search of Garcia, Tolkien was holding court with Mr. Rodgers and Ashley Martin.
“To limit the free choice of America’s inhabitants is unfair, yet allowing Europeans to wipe out the Indians is also unfair. It seems to me that the Indians could have lived here indefinitely without spoiling the place. We need to find a way to let them have it,” he said in a rather thick French accent.
Martin and Rodgers were speechless.
Jessica and Stephanie, accompanied by Kandinsky, returned to the ganohses and interrupted Nostradamus’ meditation.
“Hi, I’m Stephanie, what’s your name?”
No response.
“Excuse us for interrupting your meditation, but we were wondering why you weren’t introducing yourself,” Jessica said.
“My name is Nostradamus.”
“Nostradamus!?” Kandinsky exclaimed.
“Not the guy Orson Welles went on and on about?” Stephanie asked.
“Excuse me, but I am simply a French monk. I have studied the stars and meditated about the future. Apparently, I am now in the future.”
“The future? What century do you come from?” Stephanie asked.
“Not even one-hundred years ago, by my guess. This must be some type of second life, but I do not recognize the way you dress, or the area we are in.”
“My name is Jessica. I was a housewife living on the outskirts of a city called Charlottesville, Virginia in the 20th Century before I died.
“I was a model,” Stephanie said.
“No doubt about that,” Kandinsky confirmed.
Nostradamus, struck by their beauty, pondered cashing vows for a four-way. This type of kinky thought rarely infected the brain waves of Nostradamus, but everything was weird to him at this point. He had predicted he would return in the future, but hadn’t thought it would be so soon after his death.
Wassily, looking at fate from the monk’s perspective, wondered if it was worth it to try to help, as he was invited to do, or whether painting and living life to the fullest were a valid response to the place he had been put into.
At the main meeting table, Garcia, a 20th century minstrel ponders the situation.
He had lived an entire life in the 20th Century. He can almost remember that, but he feels and acts much younger now. All he can distinctly remember about the 20th century was taking a trip with a friend to attend a bluegrass festival in Galax, Virginia.
They had started out in a broken down car from California. His friend got more and more disgruntled as they drove through the desert, blew the transmission and had to start hitch-hiking. Somewhere around Las Vegas, his friend had given up. Undaunted, Garcia continued the trek, guitar in hand.
He remembered arriving a day late, but instantly started jamming around a huge tent with Doc Watson, the blind bluegrass legend who was the most legitimate incarnation of the music that had been transported to the hills of West Virginia, Tennessee and Kentucky from Ireland in the 18th Century. Garcia realized the importance of the occasion. It was as a teenager, with guitar in hand that he arrived in Ganandauguay.
Garcia: “People will follow their hearts no matter what we do. Earth is here to respond to those needs. It will make the adjustments as necessary. If humans waste their chance here, earth will dispatch them.”
“Dispatch, dispatch, the question here is what to do with Europeans,” Woolf clarifies. “It’s not fair for me because the people from my island escaped injustice and followed their hearts. Then they wiped out the Indians, as if that was what God wanted.”
This statement caused a stir in Nostradamus, so he walked over to the table.
“God!” Nostradamus screamed, “what you know of God is minimal, but listen to this theory: planets around the universe go through relatively the same cycle. First, the animal life finds a way to use up the resources. When and if the inhabitants escape, they try to warn the next planet. Thus, the bible, me, and the inevitable. About 10% of the idiot planets don’t develop far enough before they’re used up. You can count on earth being one of these, and it all started with the greed of the United States, dear Virginia.”
{I saw an Eskimo walking with a huge pack in an ethereal fog the other day, right
here in Roanoke, Virginia, Virginia.} (1991)
Meanwhile, Duane began to shape extra guitar-like instruments from cat-gut and

crafted sticks he borrowed from newfound Indian friends. Duane’s own guitar, a red hollow-body 1956 Gibson was meant to be played through an amplifier, but the hollow
body made it almost loud enough to hear over the loud singing blues of Garcia and Bob Marley. Larsen sat in on a homemade bass, with Corcoran on drums.
Larsen’s playing could be described as rhythmic. The correct pitch was hard to come by, as her instrument was less effective than the old washtub-broomhandle-string set-up made famous in bluegrass jug bands.
Corcoran’s “drumming” made reggae out of the question, but she at least kept up. She was using three ceremonial drums borrowed from the back of the meeting room. Garcia lead the singing of the ad-libbed first song, with Marley harmonizing with a vocal howl a third above in the verse and a third or fifth below in the chorus.
Garcia played rhythm guitar on Allman’s Gibson, while Allman used Garcia’s 1952 Martin to play lead slide guitar.

Ganandauguay

There’s a special chosen place that’s caused some nasty wars.
We dropped in from all over, this place isn’t like before.
And if you love your good neighbor,
We’ll let you stay here some more.

Chorus: I’m going to get back to the Ganandauguay blues.
I’m going to jump back in to the Ganandauguay blue.
My mind is blown by the beauty,
Won’t you come and join me too?

We got pretty little ladies, such wonderful sights to see.
We got nature in our souls and our minds are finally free.
And if you think you’re happy now,
Wait until you come in swimming with me.

Chorus

(Here Duane took a major lead, drawing looks of awe from some natives who had just emerged from the woods.)

We got to keep the place as clean as it was before.
It’s been so long since this place has seen a war.
So why don’t you join me,
And we’ll find a way to even the score.

Chorus

There’s a special chosen place that’s caused some nasty wars.
We got people from all over we never met before.
And if you love your good neighbor,
We’ll let you stay here some more.

* * *
The song ended, with natives apparently howling their approval. They had snuck in unnoticed.
They didn’t understand a word of the lyrics, but the primitive music fit their style.
The reason the natives were howling had nothing to do with the music. They were screaming to drive these white ghosts away. Two bows are drawn before Darting Sparrow, an up and coming young fighter, stepped in to stop what would have been an instant massacre of the invitees.
“Enihe!” Darting Sparrow shouted. {It means “stop”.}
The evening is setting in, which makes the tension between the two groups increase with each passing firefly.
Larsen starts to work out a sign language with Darting Sparrow.
“Look, I think he understands that we have come from the future,” she said to Virginia Woolf.
“As long as what you are saying keeps him from turning on us, we’ll be all right,” Woolf responded.
“He’s too young to have any authority,” Kandinsky pointed out.
“But if he’s a scout, we need to convince him we’re on his side, or we could all get killed before we even know what year it is, no less where the heck we are,” Larsen said.
Larsen pulled out a handkerchief and made it into the shape of a heart. She opened her hand and closed it on the hanky to make the representation of a beating heart. She then held the beating heart to her chest and made a motion like she was pulling her own heart out of her chest. She danced around with bent knees and showed the heart to all the natives. Again they howled.
“He eh ni ye” Darting Sparrow said. {Loosely translated – don’t do that.}
It really was scaring some scouts, other were just mad that she was able to one-up

Darting Sparrow. He had to get her back, but then Larsen offered him the hanky.
Again the crowd howled.
Larsen bent on her knee, kept the heart throbbing, and again offered it to Darting Sparrow. Darting Sparrow smiled and accepted the heart. He even showed the cloth to his companions, and pretended to keep the heart beating.
This display lasted long enough for more natives to arrive. The meeting house was the destination of the Turtle clan. The Turtle clan ran through the Onondaga, Cayuga, Oneida, Mohawk and Onodowaga. Even though they had previously had wars with these other tribes, the members of the Onodowaga, Turtle clan had a closer relationship with other Turtle clan members from the other tribe, than most of the members of other clans in their own tribe.
Since Larsen and her friends had arrived in the Snipe clan’s meeting house, it was going to be up to the Turtle clan to accept them, banish them, torture them or kill them.
Darting Sparrow repeated the heart demonstration to the elders of his clan. Larsen again tried to explain in sign language that they were from the future. The clan decided to take their discovery to the entire meeting that night.
Jessica, Stephanie and Katherine B. were already getting some attention from their native hosts. The men were smiling at them. The women were pawing at their clothes.
“Agwas do ges ogethae henoyo goh ganoohgwa sha,” Darting Sparrow said. {It’s really true, I talked [to them] they come in love.}
The elders talked about their guests and seemed to trust Darting Sparrow’s faith in their peaceful intentions. Jack almost ruined it for everybody when coming inside from his hacky-sack game.
“What’s going on here, for Christ’s sakes,” Jack said in a rough sarcastic tone.
“Cool it Jack, Jeanne went through a pantomime that convinced the Indians we were coming in peace. I don’t think they like your tone,” Jessica said.
“Tone!? They’re the ones howling all the time! Here we are stuck out in the middle of the woods in God knows which century and you’re going to knit-pick about tone? You’re more uptight than your hoity-toity Charlottesville neighbors!”
“Look Jack,” Katherine B. interjected, “first of all, don’t get on the Shenandoah valley, I live there too. Secondly, keep it down. If the natives get the idea that we’re not united then they won’t treat us all the same. the way I see it, we have the upper hand. They may even treat us as special guests as long as we remain calm and act like mature adults.”
“All right then, it’s starting to get dark, who’s going to sleep where, and with whom?”
“You’re a pig, Jack,” Katherine B. said.
The argument humored the natives. Jeanne walked over to the combatants.
“Look, we’ve got to be a little more civil. These people are now laughing at you. We have a chance to impress them with our knowledge. Our first goal has to be to communicate with them. If we can’t impress them, we’ll be dead.”
“We don’t have to impress anybody. This is like a second life for me. I’m going to have fun at it. I don’t give a rat’s ass about why we were “invited” here by some sophomore. I mean she’s fairly cute, but I don’t have to date the hostess. You seem like you’ve got your head on straight. What do you say we blow this meeting house and go out by the fire?” “No thanks.”
“Fine,” Jack said as he turned to Jessica and the others. “Anybody up for a little sing around the campfire?”

 

 

 

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  • Before You Speak

    Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates. At the first gate, ask yourself, ‘Is it true?’ At the second ask, ‘Is it necessary?’ At the third gate ask ‘Is it kind? Rumi  Translated by Coleman Barks

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“The Dinner Party,” a novella in 11 chapters plus endnotes, copyright, Doug Stuber, 1992.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Dinner Party Chapter One

Chapter One

Dinner Party

Monica Corcoran, Jerry Garcia, Bob Marley and Katherine B. were sitting next to James Rodgers, Jack, J.R.R. Tolkien and Ashley Martin at a dinner party. They had been invited by Corcoran, to sit in a ganohses (longhouse) halfway down the east side of Canandaigua Lake.  The year was 1622.  Blue Lake stories pervaded as Virginia Woolf walked in with a subdued Nostradamus, Catherine the Great and Wassily Kandinsky.  Tad Stuber and “Stephanie” lounged in with Jessica, Jeanne Larsen and Duane Allman.

The pow-wow was set to see who could do the most to stop Europeans from coming across the ganyodeowaneh. Or, at least insert the native culture deep within the collective psyche of the oncoming tribes of explorers.  News of men from the ocean arrived before this party.  Scouts on the eastern edge of the Haudenosaunee nations had already heard of the Puritans landing in a place they named Plymouth.

Corcoran was amazed that no natives were around to greet them.  She decided to explain a little more about her intentions for the dinner party.

“I can’t believe this party is happening, but you should listen up.  My friend and I decided to have this party in order to help the natives fend off the Europeans.  We’re here to save this place for them,” she said.

A few invitees started to grumble.  James, Ashley and Tad in particular were anxious about their surroundings.

“I was just sitting around my dorm room one day when this crazy bass player asked if we had ever played the game ‘dinner party’ before.  I told him I never heard of it.  Anyway, the game is simple:  we invited some of our favorite people here so we could get to know them.  The thing is, we got to invite anyone from history that we wanted to.”

“So why on earth did you invite me?” Stephanie asked.

“I don’t know.  I thought you were one of his better choices actually,” Corcoran responded.

“Well, at least we came with the stuff we had on us.  I think the whole thing is

bullshit.  I’m going outside to play, anyone interested,” Jack said as he waived a lemon-sized sack of bean-bag beans in the air.

A few followed him our the door.  Jack rested the hacky-sack on his forehead then started a round with Jessica, Katherine B., Kandinsky and Allman.

Amidst errant volleys, Jack suggested a conspiracy.  “Pirates, only equipped with cigarette boats and huge chains.  Just turn them away.”

“A peaceful thought but it won’t work,”  Katherine B. interjected.

“Maybe a war would keep them away,” Tad said.  “We could borrow some toys from the Pentagon and keep this place safe forever.”

“Unless you’re better at time jumping than I am, I don’t think that will work out,” Allman said.  “Who are you anyway?”

“Tad’s the name, and I say that the only way to conserve this space is to bomb the heck out of the invaders.  The technology will blow them back into the dark ages.”

Bob Marley overhears from behind a birch branch in the house.  He’s unimpressed.  “Look, it’s not the people, it’s the greed,  and the technology itself that stink!”

“We need to make sure the continent remains agrarian,” Martin said, peering over smashed beans and corn meal.

(Not knowing Martin, the author assumes she knows what she’s talking about.  But she said it, so that’s that.)

The ganohses they have landed in is one set up for special meetings.  Highly decorated mats make sitting on the ground a little more comfortable for the 20th century visitors.  Nostradamus sat in a corner meditating.  No mat needed.

Now Duane Allman was not a good hacky player.  The poor boy tried, and after being teased by Kandinsky, quit.  Wassily quit too, opting to take Stephanie and Jessica behind the bushes for an artist/model strategy session.  Because he was so used to painting abstracts, Kandinsky had to remember how to instruct the Russian methods of posing before teaching it.  He hadn’t used a model in years, but their figures were compelling.  He only had a few colors and two canvasses, so he knew each stroke would have to count.  The session didn’t last long.

Catherine the Great, now free to ponder the fate of America, suggested:  “A new

poverty.  That’s what this continent needs.  Mindless serfs with pure loyalty to our ideals.  The natural resources should only be in the hands of those who know how to use them.”

“How obvious,” Marley quipped.

“There has to be a way to get to the heart of the problem.  We need to meet with these people and get them motivated as soon as possible,” C. the G. suggests.

“Motivated to do what?” Woolf asked.

“To fight to save their homeland!”

“It doesn’t matter what they do.  The enslaving tactics of the Europeans will either wipe them out, or use them like they used the Africans.  I don’t think our little band of do-gooders is going to be able to win a war against all of Europe,” Marley said.

Tad, overhearing all this added:  “Look, around here I think it was the French who came in first.  We wouldn’t have to hold off all of Europe.”

Marley, not wanting to stay involved in war talk, meandered over to Allman.  He recognized Duane from the album cover of “Live at Fillmore East”.  It  was one of the albums Marley cherished.

“Aren’t you Duane Allman?”

“Sure am.”

“What do you think about all of this?”

“I can’t believe I’m in the middle of some ancient times.  Why did I show up with my motorcycle and electric guitar, when they are useless?”

“Don’t know, but I’d trade ten cups of this tea for just one cup of coffee,” Marley said, trying to tip off his identity.

“‘One Cup of Coffee,’ wasn’t that an obscure Bob Marley side from the early sixties?”

“Guess so.  Who do you think you’re talking to?”

“Oh my God!  I’m sorry man, I didn’t recognize you.  Your hair should have given it away,” Allman said.

“This is great, we can have a serious jam.”

“I saw a teenager with a guitar walking around too,” Allman said.   “He’s got an old Martin, a real beauty.  Maybe we should get together.”

“Sounds good to me, let’s go find the guy with the guitar,” Marley said, smiling.

While the two musicians went in search of Garcia, Tolkien was holding court with Mr. Rodgers and Ashley Martin.

“To limit the free choice of America’s inhabitants is unfair, yet allowing Europeans to wipe out the Indians is also unfair.  It seems to me that the Indians could have lived here indefinitely without spoiling the place.  We need to find a way to let them have it,” he said in a rather thick French accent.

Martin and Rodgers were speechless.

Jessica and Stephanie, accompanied by Kandinsky, returned to the ganohses and interrupted Nostradamus’ meditation.

“Hi, I’m Stephanie, what’s your name?”

No response.

“Excuse us for interrupting your meditation, but we were wondering why you weren’t introducing yourself,” Jessica said.

“My name is Nostradamus.”

“Nostradamus!?” Kandinsky exclaimed.

“Not the guy Orson Welles went on and on about?” Stephanie asked.

“Excuse me, but I am simply a French monk.  I have studied the stars and meditated about the future.  Apparently, I am now in the future.”

“The future?  What century do you come from?” Stephanie asked.

“Not even one-hundred years ago, by my guess.  This must be some type of second life, but I do not recognize the way you dress, or the area we are in.”

“My name is Jessica.  I was a housewife living on the outskirts of a city called Charlottesville, Virginia in the 20th Century before I died.

“I was a model,” Stephanie said.

“No doubt about that,” Kandinsky confirmed.

Nostradamus, struck by their beauty, pondered cashing vows for a four-way.   This type of kinky thought rarely infected the brain waves of Nostradamus, but everything was weird to him at this point.  He had predicted he would return in the future, but hadn’t thought it would be so soon after his death.

Wassily, looking at fate from the monk’s perspective, wondered if it was worth it to try to help, as he was invited to do, or whether painting and living life to the fullest were a valid response to the place he had been put into.

At the main meeting table, Garcia, a 20th century minstrel ponders the situation.

He had lived an entire life in the 20th Century.  He can almost remember that, but he feels and acts much younger now.  All he can distinctly remember about the 20th century was taking a trip with a friend to attend a bluegrass festival in Galax, Virginia.

They had started out in a broken down car from California.  His friend got more and more disgruntled as they drove through the desert, blew the transmission and had to start hitch-hiking.  Somewhere around Las Vegas, his friend had given up.  Undaunted, Garcia continued the trek, guitar in hand.

He remembered arriving a day late, but instantly started jamming around a huge tent with Doc Watson, the blind bluegrass legend who was the most legitimate incarnation of the music that had been transported to the hills of West Virginia, Tennessee and Kentucky from Ireland in the 18th Century.  Garcia realized the importance of the occasion.  It was as a teenager, with guitar in hand that he arrived in Ganandauguay.

Garcia:  “People will follow their hearts no matter what we do.  Earth is here to respond to those needs.  It will make the adjustments as necessary.  If humans waste their chance here, earth will dispatch them.”

“Dispatch, dispatch, the question here is what to do with Europeans,” Woolf clarifies.  “It’s not fair for me because the people from my island escaped injustice and followed their hearts.  Then they wiped out the Indians, as if that was what God wanted.”

This statement caused a stir in Nostradamus, so he walked over to the table.

“God!” Nostradamus screamed, “what you know of God is minimal, but listen to this theory:  planets around the universe go through relatively the same cycle.  First, the animal life finds a way to use up the resources.  When and if the inhabitants escape, they try to warn the next planet.  Thus, the bible, me, and the inevitable.  About 10% of the idiot planets don’t develop far enough before they’re used up.  You can count on earth being one of these, and it all started with the greed of the United States, dear Virginia.”

{I saw an Eskimo walking with a huge pack in an ethereal fog the other day, right

here in Roanoke, Virginia, Virginia.}  (1991)

Meanwhile, Duane began to shape extra guitar-like instruments from cat-gut and

crafted sticks he borrowed from newfound Indian friends.  Duane’s own guitar, a red hollow-body 1956 Gibson was meant to be played through an amplifier, but the hollow

body made it almost loud enough to hear over the loud singing blues of Garcia and Bob Marley.  Larsen sat in on a homemade bass, with Corcoran on drums.

Larsen’s playing could be described as rhythmic.  The correct pitch was hard to come by, as her instrument was less effective than the old washtub-broomhandle-string set-up made famous in bluegrass jug bands.

Corcoran’s “drumming” made reggae out of the question, but she at least kept up.  She was using three ceremonial drums borrowed from the back of the meeting room.  Garcia lead the singing of the ad-libbed first song, with Marley harmonizing with a vocal howl a third above in the verse and a third or fifth below in the chorus.

Garcia played rhythm guitar on Allman’s Gibson, while Allman used Garcia’s 1952 Martin to play lead slide guitar.

Ganandauguay

 

                                    There’s a special chosen place that’s caused some nasty wars.

We dropped in from all over, this place isn’t like before.

And if you love your good neighbor,

We’ll let you stay here some more.

 

 

                   Chorus:   I’m going to get back to the Ganandauguay blues.

I’m going to jump back in to the Ganandauguay blue.

My mind is blown by the beauty,

Won’t you come and join me too?

We got pretty little ladies, such wonderful sights to see.

We got nature in our souls and our minds are finally free.

And if you think you’re happy now,

Wait until you come in swimming with me.

Chorus

 

                                    (Here Duane took a major lead, drawing looks of awe from some natives who had just emerged from the woods.)

We got to keep the place as clean as it was before.

It’s been so long since this place has seen a war.

So why don’t you join me,

And we’ll find a way to even the score.

Chorus

 

                                    There’s a special chosen place that’s caused some nasty wars.

We got people from all over we never met before.

And if you love your good neighbor,

We’ll let you stay here some more.

*   *   *

            The song ended, with natives apparently howling their approval.  They had snuck in unnoticed.

They didn’t understand a word of the lyrics, but the primitive music fit their style.

The reason the natives were howling had nothing to do with the music.  They were screaming to drive these white ghosts away.  Two bows are drawn before Darting Sparrow, an up and coming young fighter, stepped in to stop what would have been an instant massacre of the invitees.

“Enihe!” Darting Sparrow shouted.  {It means “stop”.}

The evening is setting in, which makes the tension between the two groups increase with each passing firefly.

Larsen starts to work out a sign language with Darting Sparrow.

“Look, I think he understands that we have come from the future,” she said to Virginia Woolf.

“As long as what you are saying keeps him from turning on us, we’ll be all right,” Woolf responded.

“He’s too young to have any authority,” Kandinsky pointed out.

“But if he’s a scout, we need to convince him we’re on his side, or we could all get killed before we even know what year it is, no less where the heck we are,” Larsen said.

Larsen pulled out a handkerchief and made it into the shape of a heart.  She opened her hand and closed it on the hanky to make the representation of a beating heart.  She then held the beating heart to her chest and made a motion like she was pulling her own heart out of her chest.  She danced around with bent knees and showed the heart to all the natives.  Again they howled.

“He eh  ni ye” Darting Sparrow said.  {Loosely translated – don’t do that.}

It really was scaring some scouts, other were just mad that she was able to one-up

Darting Sparrow.  He had to get her back, but then Larsen offered him the hanky.

Again the crowd howled.

Larsen bent on her knee, kept the heart throbbing, and again offered it to Darting Sparrow.  Darting Sparrow smiled and accepted the heart.  He even showed the cloth to his companions, and pretended to keep the heart beating.

This display lasted long enough for more natives to arrive.  The meeting house was the destination of the Turtle clan.  The Turtle clan ran through the Onondaga, Cayuga, Oneida, Mohawk and Onodowaga.  Even though they had previously had wars with these other tribes, the members of the Onodowaga, Turtle clan had a closer relationship with other Turtle clan members from the other tribe, than most of the members of other clans in their own tribe.

Since Larsen and her friends had arrived in the Snipe clan’s meeting house, it was going to be up to the Turtle clan to accept them, banish them, torture them or kill them.

Darting Sparrow repeated the heart demonstration to the elders of his clan.  Larsen again tried to explain in sign language that they were from the future.  The clan decided to take their discovery to the entire meeting that night.

Jessica, Stephanie and Katherine B. were already getting some attention from their native hosts.  The men were smiling at them.  The women were pawing at their clothes.

“Agwas do ges ogethae henoyo goh ganoohgwa sha,” Darting Sparrow said. {It’s really true, I talked [to them] they come in love.}

The elders talked about their guests and seemed to trust Darting Sparrow’s faith in their peaceful intentions.  Jack almost ruined it for everybody when coming inside from his hacky-sack game.

“What’s going on here, for Christ’s sakes,” Jack said in a rough sarcastic tone.

“Cool it Jack, Jeanne went through a pantomime that convinced the Indians we were coming in peace.  I don’t think they like your tone,” Jessica said.

“Tone!?  They’re the ones howling all the time!  Here we are stuck out in the middle of the woods in God knows which century and you’re going to knit-pick about tone?  You’re more uptight than your hoity-toity Charlottesville neighbors!”

“Look Jack,” Katherine B. interjected, “first of all, don’t get on the Shenandoah valley, I live there too.  Secondly, keep it down.  If the natives get the idea that we’re not united then they won’t treat us all the same.  the way I see it, we have the upper hand.  They may even treat us as special guests as long as we remain calm and act like mature adults.”

“All right then, it’s starting to get dark, who’s going to sleep where, and with whom?”

“You’re a pig, Jack,” Katherine B.  said.

The argument humored the natives.  Jeanne walked over to the combatants.

“Look, we’ve got to be a little more civil.  These people are now laughing at you.  We have a chance to impress them with our knowledge.  Our first goal has to be to communicate with them.  If we can’t impress them, we’ll be dead.”

“We don’t have to impress anybody.  This is like a second life for me.  I’m going to have fun at it.  I don’t give a rat’s ass about why we were “invited” here by some sophomore.  I mean she’s fairly cute, but I don’t have to date the hostess.  You seem like you’ve got your head on straight.  What do you say we blow this meeting house and go out by the fire?”                                                       “No thanks.”

“Fine,”  Jack said as he turned to Jessica and the others.  “Anybody up for a little sing around the campfire?”

 

 

 

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  • Before You Speak

    Before you speak, let your words pass through three gates. At the first gate, ask yourself, ‘Is it true?’ At the second ask, ‘Is it necessary?’ At the third gate ask ‘Is it kind? Rumi  Translated by Coleman Barks

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“The Dinner Party,” a novella in 11 chapters plus endnotes, copyright, Doug Stuber, 1992.  Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given, and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.